Pentagon Press Secretary John Kirby said this at a briefing on June 29, according to an Ukrinform correspondent.
“There is nothing provocative about a naval exercise in international waters,” Kirby said, commenting on the start of Sea Breeze 2021.
He stressed that this position was clearly defined by Deputy Commander Captain Kyle Gantt and reaffirmed by the U.S. Department of Defense.
“This longstanding exercise continues to support security and stability in the region through interoperability with our Black Sea NATO allies and partners,” the Pentagon spokesman said.
Kirby specified that this week the exercise will include force integration training, which places participants into a pre-scripted scenario that builds familiarization at sea, and then this will transition into the unscripted scenario of testing the dynamic maritime capabilities of the participants.
As Ukrinform reported, on June 28, the Sea Breeze 2021 multinational maritime exercise, organized by the Ukrainian Navy and the U.S. Sixth Fleet, began in the Black Sea region. The exercise is taking place from June 28 to July 10 in the Black Sea region and focuses on multiple warfare areas including amphibious warfare, land maneuver warfare, diving operations, maritime interdiction operations, air defense, special operations integration, anti-submarine warfare, and search and rescue operations.
This year’s iteration involves the largest number of participating nations in the exercise’s history, including 32 countries from six continents, 5,000 troops, 32 ships, 40 aircraft, and 18 special operation and dive teams.
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