Black Sea: Bordering Countries, Map, Location, Why is it called Black Sea, Key Facts
NATO ally Turkey has closed off the Bosphorus and Dardanelles straits in the Black Sea to warships from any country to potentially limit the transit of Russian warships from the Mediterranean to the Black Sea.
Black Sea: NATO ally Turkey has closed off the Bosphorus and Dardanelles straits in the Black Sea to warships from any country to potentially limit the transit of Russian warships from the Mediterranean to the Black Sea.
Turkey has taken the decision to limit warships in the region under the power bestowed upon it by the Montreux Convention of 1936. The move is likely to limit Russia’s ability to move ships from its other fleets to the Black Sea.
Turkey in recent days changed its view of the Russian invasion of Ukraine, from calling it unacceptable to an official war. Turkey’s foreign minister Mevlut Cavusoglu was quoted saying, “It is not a couple of air strikes now, the situation in Ukraine is officially a war... We will implement the Montreux Convention.”
However, Turkey will still allow warships through if they are returning to a home base in the Black Sea. This could include Russian ships in the country’s Black Sea Fleet.
Black Sea left exposed?
Ukraine had earlier requested NATO member Turkey, which shares a maritime border with both Russia and Ukraine in the Black Sea, to close of the Bosphorus and Dardanelles straits to Russian ships in order to stop them from coming to Ukraine.
Six Russian warships and a submarine had crossed the Dardanelles and Bosphorus Straits earlier this month to the Black Sea for what Moscow called naval drills near Ukraine waters. However, Moscow used the region to launch an incursion on Ukraine's southern coast.
Unfortunately for Ukraine, there was no NATO ship in the Black Sea when Russia launched its assault against Ukraine. The nearest naval ship of a NATO member was in the Mediterranean. The last such ship of a NATO member that was in the Black Sea was a French warship, which completed its tour in early January. No other major NATO ally has patrolled the Black Sea waters since then, leaving out a major exposed flank.
Turkey has control over the straits under the 1936 Montreux Convention and can limit passing of the warships from the region. The decision of blocking the two straits was a tough one for Turkey, as it shares close relations with both Russia and Ukraine.
Let us understand more about the Black Sea here.
The Black Sea is a marginal Mediterranean sea lying between Europe and Asia. It lies to the east of the Balkans in Southeast Europe and drains into the Mediterranean Sea.
Black Sea Bordering Countries
The countries bordering the Black Sea include Ukraine, Russia, Bulgaria, Georgia, Turkey and Romania.
Black Sea Map
Why is it called Black Sea?
Very little is known about the name of Black Sea. There are various theories that the water body was called Black Sea due to its inhospitable nature. Ancient mariners called Black Sea a difficult water body to navigate through. There are also reports of presence of savage tribes on its shores.
Another theory suggests that the name Black Sea came from the storms during winter that make the water in the Sea appear black.
Another theory suggests that the objects that drown in the water get a black sludge covering after a period of time and discovery of such items across the sea may have given the Sea its name.
Black Sea: Know 7 Key Facts
1. Black Sea waters are anoxic, as there is significance absence of oxygen in the water in the Black Sea.
2. Marine life cannot survive in the anoxic zone of the Black Sea. Only oxygen-rick surface water of the Black Sea support marine life.
3. Black is also known to be the largest water body with a meromictic basin. There is low mixing between upper and lower layers of water, which is a rare phenomenon.
4. The Black Sea has a depth of over 150 meters. Its waters are filled with hydrogen sulfide for almost 2km.
5. There is no life in the deepest layers of its water except for sulfur bacteria.
6. The water level in the Black Sea remains same all the time due to absence of low and high tides. Hence, there is no fluctuation in the water level, keeping it a calm and quiet sea.
7. Due to high level of minerals and salt, objects tend to float in the Black Sea.
Russia shocked the world with its full-scale attack on Ukraine by all three mediums- land, sea and air on February 24, 2022. The Western Allies of Ukraine have responded with harsh sanctions on Russia, while Ukraine pleads for more support as it cannot hold off attacks from Russia and its mighty army any longer.
Read Also: How will Russia-Ukraine impact India?
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