U.S. Sends Coast Guard Patrol Ship To Black Sea, As Two Russian Landing Ships Remain

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U.S. Sends Coast Guard Patrol Ship To Black Sea, As Two Russian Landing Ships Remain

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A Hamilton-class US Coast Guard patrol boat is heading for the Black Sea, the US 6th Fleet said in a statement.

“A Hamilton-class US Coast Guard patrol boat has begun sailing north for passage into the Black Sea after working with USS Roosevelt in the Aegean,” the US 6th Fleet said on Twitter.

The boat will work with “NATO allies and partners in the region,” the report said.

The US Sixth Fleet, headquartered in Naples, Italy, conducts a full range of naval operations, often with allies and partners from other government departments.

On Russia’s side, the two large landing ships of the Northern Fleet, Alexander Otrakovsky and Kondopoga, are still in the Black Sea after a major exercise near Crimea, the Russian military said on April 26th.

“Large landing ships of the Northern Fleet continue to operate in the Black Sea in accordance with the plans for a long-range cruise,” the press service of the Northern Fleet said.

In an exercise in Crimea in the week ending on April 25th, the crews of Alexander Otrakovsky and Kondopoga worked out training tasks together with the troops of the Southern Military District, the press service reported.

On April 22, the main stage of the exercise of the troops of the Southern Military District and the Airborne Forces of the Russian Federation took place in Crimea. In the maneuvers, according to the Ministry of Defense of the Russian Federation, more than 10 thousand servicemen, 1.2 thousand units of weapons and military equipment, more than 40 warships and 20 support vessels were involved.

Large landing ships of the Northern and Baltic fleets of the Russian Federation, artillery and landing boats of the Caspian Flotilla came to the Black Sea for maneuvers. The Black Sea Fleet reported about 50 combat aircraft being relocated to Crimea.

Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu said on April 22 that the exercises in Crimea were successful. Shoigu said that from April 23, the troops begin to return to their places of permanent deployment. According to him, this applies to the personnel of the 58th Army of the Southern Military District, the 41st Army of the Central Military District, the Seventh, 76th Airborne Assault and 98th Airborne Divisions of the Airborne Forces. The redeployment should be completed by May 1.

More than 50 planes and helicopters flew out of Crimea after the exercise, the Southern Military District said on Monday.

On April 23, the Ministry of Defense of the Russian Federation reported that more than 20 ships of the Black Sea Fleet of the Russian Federation returned to their permanent deployment points after participating in exercises in the Crimea region. On the same day, the Black Sea Fleet of the Russian Federation reported that large landing ships with marines left for their permanent deployment points.

The United States and European countries have previously expressed concern about the strengthening of the military grouping in Crimea and the movement of Russian troops near the border with Ukraine.

Russia urged not to consider the maneuvers of the Armed Forces near the border with Ukraine as a manifestation of aggression.

Russia’s Aerospace Forces warplanes that took part in the exercises were also returned to their permanent deployment positions.

“More than 50 operational-tactical aircraft and helicopters of army aviation of the Air Force and Air Defense Association of the Southern Military District and naval aviation of the Black Sea Fleet were returned from the Crimea to permanent airfields after a control check during the winter training period,” the Ministry of Defense’s outlet Red Star reported.

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