KIEV, March 16 – RIA Novosti. The naval forces of Ukraine held exercises in the Black Sea in conjunction with the ships of the permanent naval mine action group of NATO, the press service of the navy said on Tuesday.
On March 10, an anti-mine group of NATO ships entered the port of Odessa.
“In the Black Sea, the tactical boat tactical group of the Ukrainian Armed Forces, together with the permanent NATO naval mine action group No. 2 SNMCMG2, conducted joint training at sea of the PASSEX type,” the Ukrainian Navy said on Facebook.
It is noted that the purpose of the training was to work out the interaction between the crews of the ships of the Ukrainian Navy with the Navy of Turkey, Romania and the Royal Spanish Navy. “We have practiced mine action training as part of a group of ships, transferring cargo on the move, repelling enemy air attack weapons, conducting naval combat training,” the Navy said.
This is the second PASSEX-type training session this year with the participation of the Ukrainian Navy and NATO ships in the Black Sea region.
The Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine in December 2014 amended two laws, abandoning the non-aligned status of the state. In June 2016, additional amendments were adopted that define NATO membership as the country's foreign policy goal. Ukraine also had to ensure full compatibility of its armed forces with the forces of NATO countries by 2020.
In recent years, Russia has been claiming unprecedented NATO activity along its western borders. NATO is expanding initiatives and calls it “containing Russian aggression.” Moscow has repeatedly expressed concern about the buildup of the alliance's forces in Europe. Press Secretary of the Russian President Dmitry Peskov said earlier that Russia poses no threat to anyone, but will not disregard actions that are potentially dangerous to its interests.