Putin: Kiev would like to see Ukrainian sailors dead in Kerch Strait
The Ukrainian authorities, planning the Kerch Strait incident, anticipated that some of the naval sailors would be killed, Russian President Vladimir Putin said at an annual news conference.
"As for the Ukrainian service members’ future, they were sent out with anticipation that some of them would be killed. I can see that huge displeasure among the ruling circles [of Ukraine] was caused by the fact that none had been killed. Thanks God, this did not happen," the head of state noted.
Putin believes that Ukraine's President Pyotr Poroshenko sought to use the Kerch Strait incident to raise his rating ahead of the presidential election.
At the same time, Putin stressed that trade between Russia and Ukraine is growing.