News from Ukraine: Ukraine-US 'Sea Breeze 2016' drills enter active phase (video)

15:02 Jul. 24, 2016

Ukraine-US 'Sea Breeze 2016' drills enter active phase (video)

Ukraine-US 'Sea Breeze 2016' drills, 2013 (UNIAN Photo)

This year military exercises are said to be the largest in the whole range of joint Ukrainian-U.S. naval maneuvers

Odesa held the opening ceremony launching the active phase of the Ukrainian-US military exercises ‘Sea Breeze 2016'.

Ukraine's Defence Ministry reports, the event was attended by Ukraine's Deputy Prime Minister for European and Euro-Atlantic Integration Ivanna Klympush-Tsintsadze, Ukraine's Defence Minister Stepan Poltorak, Moldova's Defence Minister Anatol Salaru and Ambassadors of countries participating in the exercise.

Srepan Poltorak said, Ukrainian servicemen start their practical training along with their American counterparts and military from partner states.

Read also Sea Breeze 2016: Troops practice landing operation and evacuation of wounded

"This year the drills take place under Russia's ongoing aggression against Ukraine - the aggression which is aiming to destruct the existing system of European and global security. We are witnessing an unprecedented growth in security threats across Europe. That is why the ‘Sea Breeze 2016' drills are our joint contribution to ensuring stability and security in the Black Sea region," said Poltorak

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Ukraine-US 'Sea Breeze 2016' drills, 2013 (UNIAN Photo)

The minister said, the outbreak of terrorist attacks, radical and separatist movements threatens not only Ukraine, but also NATO's members, Europe and the Black Sea region in particular.

"The Warsaw Summit clearly defined challenges recently faced by Alliance's members and partners, and identified ways to counter existing threats. One of key objectives is to strengthen security measures on the southern flank of Europe, and in the Black Sea," said Poltorak.

Watch also Ukrainian and US soldiers carry out manoeuvers in Mykolaiv region

He also stressed the importance of this year's military exercises in terms of improving the capacity of Ukraine's army and its naval component, deepening interoperability with the armed forces of Ukraine's key partners and allies. 

The Defence Minister said that during the active phase, soldiers will practice a wide range of marine, coastal and air operations. He believes that the current training will also enhance the combat capability of Ukraine's Navy. 

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Ukraine-US 'Sea Breeze 2016' drills, 2013 (UNIAN Photo) 

Poltorak expressed his gratitude to US partners, and defence agencies of all participating countries for their help in organizing this year's exercises.

Read also Poroshenko approves NATO military exercises in Ukraine next year

The Ukrainian-US exercises 'Sea Breeze 2016' started on 18 July. The drills take place in Odesa and Mykolaiv regions as well as in the north-western part of the Black sea.

The 2016 marine component includes 26 vessels, 20 planes and helicopters, as well as 50 military equipment units and 4,000 soldiers. Except for the Ukrainian and American navy, representatives of 14 other countries are taking part in the manoeuvers.

The exercises will last until July 30.

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