Ukrainian military to conduct large-scale drills in Azov Sea - NSDC

Ukrainian military to conduct large-scale drills in Azov Sea - NSDC

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Ukrinform
National Security and Defense Council (NSDC) Secretary Oleksandr Turchynov has said that Ukrainian servicemen plan to conduct large-scale exercises in the Azov Sea.

He said this at a press conference on Thursday, when asked about Russia's plans soon to conduct drills in the Azov Sea and Ukraine's actions in this regard, according to an Ukrinform correspondent.

"I want to provide information that I have not yet disclosed to anyone. Ukrainian military also plan to conduct serious exercises in the Azov Sea," Turchynov said.

He noted a buildup of military components in the Azov Sea, in response to Russian aggression. According to him, Ukraine is increasing its naval forces, considerably strengthening coast guard and aviation component. "Of course, we are ready to respond to any provocations from the Russian side," Turchynov said.

As reported, in late September, the Ukrainian Navy's Donbas search and rescue vessel and Korets sea tug made a trip from Odesa to Mariupol through the Kerch Strait. The operation, carried out under the command of the General Staff of the Ukrainian Armed Forces in pursuance of the decision of the Ukrainian president, was conducted to strengthen Ukrainian presence in the Sea of Azov and ensure freedom of navigation in its water areas. The ships will form the basis of a new naval base in the Azov Sea, which should be set up by the end of 2018.

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