Bulgaria destroys naval mine off its Black Sea coast

SOFIA, July 1 (Reuters) - Bulgaria's military late on Thursday carried out a controlled explosion of a Soviet-era naval mine that had drifted close to the country's Black Sea coast, the defence ministry said on Friday.

Black Sea countries began to report the appearance of such mines floating in the sea after Russia invaded Ukraine in February. Russia and Ukraine accuse each other of planting them.

The defence ministry said the mine was first noticed some 27 nautical miles east of the mouth of the Kamchia river by a motor ship.

"Military experts classify the mine as an anchored "YaM" type, placed in a combat position. The mine has been destroyed with a controlled explosion carried out by a group of divers," it said in a statement.

The Black Sea is a major shipping artery for grain, oil and oil products.

Reporting by Tsvetelia Tsolova Editing by Andrew Osborn

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