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Naval dredger of NATO member Romania is hit by a MINE in the Black Sea

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Naval dredger of NATO member Romania is hit by a MINE in the Black Sea

A Romanian navy dredger struck a floating mine on Thursday that it was trying to defuse in bad weather, but the 75-person crew was unharmed from the explosion, the defense ministry said.

Mines started floating in the Black Sea after Russia invaded Ukraine on February 24, and Romanian, Bulgarian and Turkish military diving teams have defused those floating in their waters.

The ministry said the ship had been warned of a mine drifting about 25 nautical miles northeast of the Romanian Black Sea port of Constanta, but was unable to defuse it before being hit due to high winds and waves.

“There were no casualties or injuries after the explosion, the 75 men on the ship are not in danger, the buoyancy of the ship is not affected and there is no major damage on board,” the ministry said in a statement.

The Black Sea is crucial for the transport of grain, oil and oil products. The waters are shared by Bulgaria, Romania, Georgia and Turkey, as well as Ukraine and Russia.

Turkey, Romania, Bulgaria and Ukraine have destroyed 28 mines in the western waters of the Black Sea since the start of the war, the ministry said.

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