NATO warship activity in the Black Sea is a matter of concern for Russian President Vladimir Putin and a reason for heightened precautions, Kremlin Spokesman Dmitry Peskov said.
It is "absolutely a matter of concern to him and he has spoken about this," Peskov told reporters in response to a question about how Putin feels about US warships taking part in a multinational exercise in the Black Sea region, held by the United States European Command.
He said there are regular contacts between the military of the two countries that aim to prevent conflicts. But this activity near the Russian border calls for "heightened precautions," as the head of state and the defense minister said earlier, Peskov said.
Earlier, the Defense Ministry said that US Navy ships arrived for the multinational exercise in the Black Sea region, which is being held by the United States European Command. According to the ministry, USS Porter, a destroyer carrying guided missiles, USNS John Lenthall, a replenishment oiler, and USS Mount Whitney, a command ship, are in the area.
The Defense Ministry said the US forces were holding unscheduled activities and created a multinational group of armed forces in close proximity to the Russian border. The ministry said the actions were a destabilizing factor for the region and are aimed at the military development of the Ukrainian territory. The Russian armed forces are monitoring the situation, it said.
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