A Moscow court has extended the detention of eight out of 24 Ukrainian seamen captured by Russian coast guards in the Black Sea.

Three Ukrainian vessels and their crews were fired at and captured by the Russians in November, triggering a showdown between Russia and Ukraine in a conflict that has been simmering since Russia’s annexation of the Crimean peninsula in 2014.

A Moscow district court on Tuesday ruled that eight out of the 24 seamen, including the captain of one of the vessels, should be held until late April. Russia insists the men should be tried for violating its border. Ukraine calls them prisoners of war who were illegally captured.

Russia seized Crimea in 2014 in a move that Ukraine and most of the world views as illegal.

A Ukrainian sailor is escorted by a Russian intelligence agency FSB officer to a court room in Moscow, Russia, Tuesday, Jan. (AP Photo/Pavel Golovkin)
A Ukrainian sailor is escorted by a Russian intelligence agency FSB officer to a court room in Moscow, Russia, Tuesday, Jan. (AP Photo/Pavel Golovkin)
CORRECTS PHOTOGRAPHER NAME  Ukrainian sailors are escorted by a Russian intelligence agency FSB officer to a court room in Moscow, Russia, Tuesday, Jan. (AP Photo/Pavel Golovkin)
CORRECTS PHOTOGRAPHER NAME Ukrainian sailors are escorted by a Russian intelligence agency FSB officer to a court room in Moscow, Russia, Tuesday, Jan. (AP Photo/Pavel Golovkin)

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