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Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)

Black Sea Fleet's Proficiency Quintuples in 2014 – Russian Ministry of Defense

RIA Novosti

14:34 31/07/2014

MOSCOW, July 31 (RIA Novosti) - The combat proficiency of the Russian Black Sea Fleet and Caspian Flotilla has increased fivefold since the beginning of the year, the press service of the Southern Military District said Thursday.

"Since the beginning of the year the Black Sea Fleet and Caspian Flotilla have held 12 exercises. Last year the same period of time saw nine such exercises. The combat training rate has increased five times. The number of battle exercises, including missile and gun firing, has increased and been carried out together with air and ground forces," the press service said.

The number of military exercises increased 1.5 times, which included 15 missile firing exercises, about 180 gun practices, and more than 15 shelling exercises.

In March 2014, Crimea and Sevastopol, as a result of a referendum, became part of the Russian Federation. NATO has condemned Russia's actions and said it would respond with counter-measures.

In July, NATO brought nine ships to the Black Sea, which is the largest number of NATO ships in the region for the past decade.

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