The General Staff of the Ukrainian Armed Forces has confirmed reports of Russian merchant ships entering the port.
Residents of Russian-occupied Berdiansk noticed the movement of two Russian commercial ships that were probably loaded with stolen Ukrainian grain in the port of Berdiansk from 18 to 22 April.
According to MarineTraffic, a maritime analytics provider that provides real-time information on the movements of ships and the current location of ships in harbors and ports, three vessels physically similar to the bulk carrier that was seen in the Berdiansk seaport were in the Sea of Azov with disabled AIS systems as of 20 April.
All these three Russian dry cargo ships (Andrei Zuev, Vladimir, and Idel-1) left the port of Azov and were supposed to go to Novorossiysk. One of them probably entered the Berdiansk seaport illegally.
Berdiansk residents spotted another vessel heading to the seized seaport on 21 April. As of the evening of 22 April, this second ship was approximately at berth No. 4 to load grain, sunflower, or other grain that was stolen from farmers in the occupied part of the Zaporizhia region.