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The BALTOPS exercises led by the United States will be carried out in Russia’s backyard. NATO has reinforced its presence in the Baltic region despite Russia’s concerns. In addition to the Spring Storm simulations in Estonia, with 10,000 troops from more than a dozen countries involved, naval exercises called the Baltic Protector began.
The USS Mount Whitney of the United States Navy passed through the Great Belt of the Danish Strait and sailed to the Baltic Sea, according to the AIS naval monitoring resource. A day earlier, it was learned that the HMCS St. John’s of Canada had sailed to the region, reports the Russian website Gazeta.ru.
Both ships are expected to participate in NATO’s annual BALTOPS drills, led by the United States, along with ships, planes and landing forces from more than a dozen other nations in mid-June.
At the beginning of May, the Baltic Protector was launched, a series of tactical maritime exercises by NATO in Scandinavia and the Baltic Sea region and land-based landing exercises. The multinational war games will involve a total of 3,000 military personnel and 17 ships from Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Denmark, Norway, Sweden and the Netherlands.
The Baltic Protector is made up of the Amphibian Task Force of the United Kingdom, which includes the flagship HMS Albion, a helicopter support vessel, a frigate and a military ferry, as well as the Danish command ship HDMS Absalon, an amphibious ship Dutch and two Norwegian missile ships.
It has been shown that NATO has strengthened its presence in the Baltic region in recent weeks, with France and the United Kingdom recently deploying more troops, tanks and helicopters to the Baltics as part of their deployment and rotating drills. In April, NATO launched its annual Spring Storm simulations in Estonia, with 10,000 soldiers performing ground and air exercises in the country for three weeks.
Moscow has repeatedly expressed its concern over the expansion of NATO’s future presence along Russia’s borders in the Baltic countries, Poland and Romania, pointing out the risks of an accidental escalation and warning that it would supervise the military operations of the alliance in the region.
In May, the Russian army tracked a Boeing RC-135V spy plane from the US Air Force. UU While flying near the maritime borders of the Russian exclave of Kaliningrad along the Baltic Sea. The country’s army also conducted missile drills in the region, with a Baltic Fleet corvette firing a pair of Uran anti-ship missiles at targets 30 kilometers away.
Source: ES News-Front