Sea Breeze 2018 scenario to be outlined at Odesa conference
The first planning conference for the Sea Breeze 2018 international maritime exercise began in Odesa on Monday, the Ukrainian Armed Forces' Navy Command press service said.
"The purpose of the conference is to develop a scenario, agree on training objectives, decide on the composition of forces to be involved in the exercise," the press service said in a statement released on Monday evening.
The event is being led by the Ukrainian Navy Deputy Commander for combat training, Rear Admiral Oleksiy Neyizhpapa. The U.S. Navy delegation is led by 1st rank Captain Michael Villegas.
"We must consider all the proposals submitted by participants after last year's exercise, which turned out very eventful and fruitful. We need to move forward, optimize the level of interoperability, and improve our results," Neyizhpapa said.
This is the first of three conferences traditionally held during the preparatory period, the press service said.
The Sea Breeze has been held annually since 1997 under the 1993 U.S.-Ukrainian memorandum on mutual understanding and cooperation on defense and military relations between the two countries' defense ministries. The exercise aims to train and boost the Ukrainian Navy's combat readiness bilaterally, but is open to other countries as well.