“Sea Breeze 2021”: Black Sea maneuvers in difficult times

As of: 28.06.2021 12:41 p.m.

As of today, the armed forces of 32 nations have been practicing the “Sea Breeze” maneuver in the Black Sea. Russia warns of further incidents such as the recent trial of strength with the British warship “HMS Defender”.

From Christina Nagel,
ARD studio Moscow

It is not the first time that Russia has taken a storm against the “Sea Breeze” maneuver led by the United States and Ukraine. But the mood in the run-up was rarely as tense as it is now: “The situation in Europe as a whole is extremely dangerous,” warned Russia’s Defense Minister Sergei Shojgu at the Moscow Security Conference last week. He called on the West to do more to de-escalate the situation, for example by refraining from military maneuvers in sensitive border regions – also to minimize the risk of incalculable incidents.

Just a few hours later, the skirmish between the British destroyer “HMS Defender” and the Russian armed forces near the Crimean peninsula illustrated how fast it can go. In which the Russian side – as video recordings meanwhile show – actually used real ammunition for warning shots in order to move the British warship to change course. The destroyer had deliberately penetrated “Russian territorial waters” in order to provoke, says Russia’s Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov: The question of whether Crimea belongs to Russia was finally resolved “once and for all” in 2014.

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Sea breeze off the Crimea to support the West for Ukraine

Jo Angerer, ARD Moscow, daily news 5:00 p.m., June 28, 2021

For the majority of the world community, however, Crimea was and is still part of Ukraine in accordance with international law. Which is why the British point out that their ship was in Ukrainian and not in Russian waters.

“Refined British Humor”

Former Ukrainian Minister of Infrastructure, Volodymyr Omelyan, said it was a small but fine show of force: “I think it was clever British humor that shows that all of Russia’s claims to the conquered territories are worthless.”

The maneuver that begins today, in which many NATO countries, above all the USA, are participating, is correspondingly important to Ukrainian President Volodymyr Selenskyj. It is a matter of ensuring that free trade and free shipping will continue to be possible in the Black Sea in the future, he emphasized.

And also to show the flag clearly to Russia, Omeljan says: “You tried in every possible way to prevent the exercise, because it is not just a Ukrainian-American maneuver. There are a record number of participants. to show Putin his place. ”

Russia is keeping “all options” open

5,000 military personnel from 32 countries will be there this time, more than 30 ships and 40 aircraft.

The exercise will be closely monitored, said the spokesman for the Russian Defense Ministry, Igor Konashenkov, “and, if the situation is in doubt, react appropriately. In the interests of the security of the Russian Federation.”

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Russia, Kremlin spokesman Dmitri Peskov had also stressed in the run-up to the exercise, is keeping all options open to protect its borders.

At the same time, the country is flexing its muscles during an exercise in the eastern Mediterranean: after all, Russia has a naval and air force base in Syria. Fighter planes that can carry supersonic missiles are also used in the military exercise. At the weekend, ships of the Russian Navy and NATO allies came dangerously close – now the next delicate maneuver is underway in heated times.

Delicate maneuver: International military exercise in the Black Sea

Christina Nagel, ARD Moscow, June 28, 2021 11:09 am


June 28, 2021 • 5:51 pm

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