Smetlivy, the destroyer of the Russian Navy's Black Sea Fleet has illegally entered the area of Sea Breeze drills; as is known, the annual Ukraine-U.S. exercises are taking place in the waters of the Black Sea. This creates a potentially dangerous situation, the Ukrainian Navy HQ reported.
"In spite of the onshore message for the navigators, which claimed that the area is closed for Sea Breeze 2019 international drills, Smetlivy, Russian Navy's Black Sea Fleet vessel entered the closed area, where the international coalition naval group's ship artillery conducted the practical shooting exercises, - at about 8 a.m, July 10, 2019. The Black Sea fleet was interviewed by the Hetman Sagaidachny frigate, as the international protocol requires, but the ship acted as if it had trouble with communications", the message says.
By doing so, Smetlivy, the world's oldest destroyer in service aimed to provoke a dangerous situation, the Ukrainian Navy HQ said.
In 2013, Smetlivy was sent off the coast of Syria in response to military tensions and a buildup of Western naval forces. Smetlivy returned to Syria in September 2015. During the Syrian deployment, Smetlivy fired warning shots at a Turkish fishing vessel on 13 December 2015 after the Turkish ship reportedly did not respond to radio calls or signal flares to turn away from the destroyer. The Turkish fishing vessel Geçiciler-1 in its own accord has reported to the Turkish Coast Guard that no shots were detected from Smetlivy and that they passed the static Russian ship from a mile distance and continued with their fishing undisturbed. Video material from Geçiciler-1 has been handed over to the Turkish Coast Guard.