- Russia's Black Sea Fleet conducted a live rocket fire drill, targeting surface objects, following a warning about treating ships towards Ukraine's Black Sea ports as potential military targets.
- The warning was issued after Russia withdrew from the Black Sea grain deal, nullifying security assurances for vessels carrying Ukrainian grain.
- The Defence Ministry confirmed the successful completion of the drill, which also included the practice of intercepting an offending vessel.
On a recent Friday, the Defence Ministry of Russia reported that their Black Sea Fleet had conducted a live firing drill, wherein rockets were targeted at surface objects. This comes as a notable development, especially considering the fact that only two days earlier, a warning had been issued from Russia, stipulating that any ships voyaging towards Ukraine's Black Sea ports may be treated as potential military threats.
This stern warning by Russia was issued subsequent to its withdrawal from the Black Sea grain pact earlier in the week, which effectively nullified security assurances for vessels transporting Ukrainian grain. This decision compelled Ukraine to contemplate the establishment of a provisional maritime route in order to maintain the export of its grain. Russia, however, cautioned that any ships en route to Ukraine's Black Sea harbors could potentially be seen as carriers of military supplies.
The Defence Ministry elaborated on the exercises, stating, "As per the planned combat training protocol of the Black Sea Fleet, the Ivanovets missile boat team executed a live fire of anti-ship cruise missiles targeted at a dummy vessel." The Ministry later confirmed the success of the exercise through telemetry data and drone footage. According to these sources, the targeted 'vessel' was effectively destroyed by the rocket strike.
Adding to the details of the training, the Defence Ministry announced that the fleet also simulated the closing off of certain areas that were temporarily declared off-limits to maritime transit. The naval forces practiced intercepting and seizing a transgressing vessel, thus adding another layer to the comprehensive exercise.
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