Odesa hosts final planning conference for Ukrainian-U.S. drills Sea Breeze-2021
The final planning conference for the Ukrainian-American exercises Sea Breeze-2021 ended in Odesa on May 13, the public relations service of the Command of the Naval Forces of the Armed Forces of Ukraine said.
"The purpose of the event was to finalize the plan, the format for attracting the participating states and reconnaissance of the venues," the Ukrainian Navy said on its Facebook page.
The conference, together with Ukraine, was attended by 16 member states and partners of the North Atlantic Alliance.
"The Sea Breeze is another important step and the most important event aimed at obtaining the capabilities of the Navy to operate completely according to NATO standards. This year we are returning to a full-scale training format, in which all components are involved," Commander of the Ukrainian Navy, Rear Admiral Oleksiy Neyizhpapa said.
This year, for the first time, representatives of Senegal and Tunisia took part in the final conference.
In general, it is planned to attract more than 30 ships, 30 aircraft in the naval and air components and more than 1,400 military personnel from various countries in the land component.
The current Sea Breeze exercise brings together a record number of participating countries, namely 27 countries will take part directly with the involvement of units, ships, aircraft and appropriate officers. Taking into account the "observers", up to 35 countries are planning to take part in the Sea Breeze-2021 exercises.
Last year, due to quarantine restrictions, the Sea Breeze exercises were limited to only the naval phase with the involvement of aviation. All joint activities took place in the Black Sea without personnel contact.
The Sea Breeze exercises have been conducted on the territory of Ukraine since 1997 in accordance with the 1993 Memorandum between the U.S. and Ukrainian Ministries of Defense. The co-organizers of the exercises are Ukraine and the United States.