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Russian Warship Fired Warning Shots At Turkish Fishing Vessel To Avoid Collision

A Russian defense ministry statement said the warning shots were fired after the ships approached each other in the Aegean Sea near the Greek island of Lemnos Sunday.

Posted on December 13, 2015, at 8:23 a.m. ET

A Russian warship passes through the Bosphorus in Turkey
AP

A Russian warship passes through the Bosphorus in Turkey

A Russian warship fired warning shots at a Turkish fishing vessel which came within 1,800 feet of it in the Aegean Sea near the Greek island of Lemnos Sunday.

A Russian defense ministry statement said the warning shots were fired to avoid a collision between the two vessels.

As a result of the incident Deputy Defense Minister Anatoly Antonov has urgently summoned the Turkish military attaché in Russia to the defense ministry, state media agency Interfax reported.

The incident is the latest in a series of confrontations between the two nations since Turkey shot down a Russian jet on Nov. 24.

Relations between the two countries remain tense, with Turkey maintaining the downed warplane crossed into its airspace. Russia disputes this.

In a statement about Sunday's incident, the defense ministry in Moscow said:

Despite multiple efforts of the Smetlivy to establish a contact with the Turkish seine vessel, its crew did not respond to radio and semaphore signals as well as signal rockets.

After the distance between the Turkish seine vessel the Russian guard ship reached 600 meters, the naval small arms were used at the distance of guaranteed survivability ... in order to prevent the collision of the ships.

The Turkish vessel then changed direction without contacting the Russian crew, the statement added.