Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Russian General Staff: Russian Black Sea Fleet tracking NATO ships

Генштаб: Корабли Черноморского флота РФ приступили к слежению за действиями натовских кораблей в Черном море

Naval vessels of the Russian Black Sea Fleet continue to carry out the task of securing Abkhazia's coast. The statement was made at a Moscow press conference by Anatoly Nogovitsyn, Deputy Chief of the General Staff of the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation, reports an IA Regnum correspondent.

According to Nogovitsyn, as a result of the recent increase of NATO member country vessels in the Black Sea, the Russian fleet has begun to track the movements of these ships.

Nogovitsyn reminded journalists that in 1936, a convention [i.e. the Montreux Convention] was established concerning the status of the Black Sea. This document defines the number of naval vessels and duration of their stay for countries who do not have territory bordering the Black Sea. According to this convention, NATO can no longer continue to increase its fleet on the Black Sea. The maximum tonnage of these ships is not to exceed 45 thousand tons. The maximum duration of stay in the Black Sea is 21 days, after which a rotation must take place.

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