"Following an illegal annexation of Crimea by the
Russian Federation, Ukraine has lost part of its naval forces. But I want to be
clear: the Ukrainian Naval Forces will return to Crimea", announced Prime
Minister of Ukraine Arseniy Yatsenyuk on Tuesday, September 1, in Odessa during
an opening ceremony of multinational
maritime exercise Sea Breeze
Arseniy Yatsenyuk called the exercise Sea Breeze an
extremely significant event in history of bilateral relations between Ukraine
and the United States of America: "Our common objective is to maintain
peace, stability and security in the Black Sea".
After the unlawful seizure of Crimea, the Black Sea north
coast has turned into a turbulent and unstable area, according to the Head of
the Government: "So, our joint exercise is in synergy with our American
partners and other countries taking part in the training to do everything
possible to transfer the Black Sea into a stable one; to prevent any country
from thoughts about capturing a territory of another country; to ensure our
security and economic interests to be protected."
Arseniy Yatsenyuk emphasized the current task is to preserve
peace and stability, and due to our joint exercise with the American partners
both to speak the same language and to work following the same standards":
"The task for Ukraine is to switch to NATO standards".
The Prime Minister reminded that a year before the NATO
partners had launched five trust funds aimed at modernization of the Ukrainian
Armed Forces and the Naval Forces: "This includes brand new advanced
logistics of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, the new educational system, new
reconnaissance approaches and maximized approaching of the Ukrainian Army
standards to the NATO standards".
Arseniy Yatsenyuk expressed gratitude to the American people
and the U.S. Administration for supporting the people of Ukraine in the
struggle for independence: "We are not just partners, we're close friends.
And we are fighting for freedom and liberty together".
This year an annual exercise Sea Breeze, which was first
held in 1997, will be characterized by an unprecedented scale throughout the
entire history of the event with up to 2500 participants from different
countries. Ukraine’s participation in Sea Breeze 2015 includes approximately 1
thousand military officers, up to 9 ships, 8 planes and helicopters and other
equipment. U.S. participation in Sea Breeze 2015 includes up to 1 thousand
military personnel with armament and military equipment, up to 5 ships, 2
submarines, up to 6 planes and helicopters, 40 wheeled vehicles.