Commentary of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Abkhazia in connection with the military exercises of NATO countries in the Black Sea

Commentary of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Abkhazia in connection with the military exercises of NATO countries in the Black Sea
21 July 2020 167

NATO countries' «Sea Breeze 2020» military exercises started in the Black Sea on July 20,2020 in which the Georgian military personnel are also taking part. In total, 27 warships, 19 aircraft and 2,000 military personnel from Ukraine, Georgia and seven NATO member countries: the United States, Bulgaria, Turkey, Romania, France, Spain and Norway are participating in naval maneuvers.

The purpose of the exercise is to strengthen of the regional security according to the representatives of the US Navy's Sixth Fleet. “Our participation in multinational exercises such as Sea Breeze 2020 is a real demonstration that the United States is involved in the collective defense of Europe,” the Sixth Fleet said in a statement. However, the statement of the US representatives bypasses the question of whether such activity of the Western military bloc in the Black Sea corresponds to the real needs of ensuring of the regional security.

Meanwhile, the increasingly growing of military activity of the NATO countries led by the United States in the Black Sea region causes justifiable concern in the Republic of Abkhazia.

It is completely incomprehensible how this kind of NATO military exercises can contribute to "strengthening of regional security" and from whom is the US going to "defend Europe"? Who exactly have NATO countries ranked as “likely adversaries”? There is much more reason to believe that military exercises under the auspices of the United States, taking place in the Black Sea, are contributing to further escalation of tension in the region, giving arguments to the supporters of military solutions.

Regular active participation of the military from Georgia in NATO exercises directly contradicts the declared intentions of the Georgian leadership to solve the existing territorial problems exclusively by peaceful and diplomatic means.

We are convinced that the active involvement of Tbilisi in the military exercises of NATO member countries creates an additional threat to peace and stability in the region and can provoke an increase in revanchist sentiments in Georgia. Such a development of events could lead to unpredictable consequences and provoke a new round of tension both in the Black Sea basin and in the South Caucasus.

In this regard, we once again appeal to the United States and its NATO allies to refrain from conducting such military exercises in the Black Sea, using various types of modern military equipment. The entire responsibility for the possible negative consequences rests entirely with the United States and its NATO allies in the event of an escalation of tension in the region.

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