The Netherlands Says Russian Jets Spent Hours Practicing Mock Attacks on Its Frigate in the Black Sea
The vessel had visited Odessa with HMS Defender and is an escort for British carrier Queen Elizabeth
The Ministry of Defense of the Netherlands has accused Russian fighters of flying dangerously close to the Dutch frigate Evertsen in the Black Sea, creating an unsafe situation.
According to the Dutch Ministry of Defense, the incident “occurred last Thursday, when the warship stayed southeast of Crimea”.
“The planes repeatedly harassed the Evertsen between 3:30 p.m. and 8:30 p.m. local time,” the Dutch top brass alleged.
“They flew dangerously close by and low [over the frigate], performing feint attacks. The fighters were armed with bombs and air-to-surface missiles intended to strike targets from the air,” the Defense Ministry of the Netherlands claimed. On top of that, the frigate suffered disruptions of its electronic equipment after the flyover, it added.
The Dutch side claims that Russia violated the right to free shipping through its actions, as well as bilateral accords, including the agreement on preventing incidents at sea that is aimed at ruling out unsafe maritime situations. “The Evertsen sailed on the open sea in international waters,” Ship Commander Lieutenant-Captain George Pastoor claimed.
“There was no reason whatsoever for these aggressive actions. Despite this, the mock attacks continued for several hours. It was irresponsible and unsafe behavior at sea,” he alleged.
The frigate Evertsen is part of the British carrier strike group led by the UK Navy’s destroyer Defender.
— Yeni Şafak English (@yenisafakEN) June 30, 2021
Russian Navy keeping close watch on Italian warship in Black Sea
The Russian Black Sea Fleet is keeping a close watch on the Italian Navy’s guided missile frigate Virginio Fasan that has entered the Black Sea, Russia’s National Defense Control Center reported on Thursday.
“The Black Sea Fleet’s forces and capabilities have started to track the Italian Navy’s guided missile frigate Virginio Fasan that entered the Black Sea on July 1,” the National Defense Control Center said.
Currently, the Sea Breeze 2021 international military drills are running in the Black Sea with the participation of Ukraine and NATO member states. The largest maneuvers in more than 20 years will last until July 10. According to the data of the US side, the drills involve 32 countries, about 5,000 personnel, 32 warships, 40 aircraft and 18 land-and sea-based special operations groups.