Multinational military exercises “Sea Breeze-2006” will be held in other country, if the Verkhovna Rada does not approve of access of the foreign military units to the territory of Ukraine. It was revealed by the First Deputy Defence Minister Leonid Polyakov at a briefing in the Foreign Ministry.

He recalled that Ukraine-US tactic exercises “Sea Breeze” have been held in Ukraine since 1997. This year seventeen countries had to take part in the exercises: Ukraine, the USA, Russia, Turkey, Bulgaria, Georgia, France, the Great Britain, Romania, Canada, Lithuania, Greece, Italy, India, Germany, Switzerland and Moldova. The exercise is scheduled to be held from July 16 to August 2.

Polyakov stressed that all these years Ukraine always rented specially equipped containers for settlement of personnel, headquarters and food stations. It cost Ukraine $40,000 annually.

U.S. proposed to build a stationary base for Ukraine to avoid annual rent expenses. It was settled at one of the Sea Breeze planning conferences. Later on, developing the infrastructure, Starokrymsky training ground would become a special centre for peacekeeping trainings of the Ukrainian marines. This project costs $350,000.

By now 227 American unarmed reservists stay in the sanatorium attached to the Defence Ministry of Ukraine. The anti-NATO protesters keep blocking the engineering facilities.

As a reminder, June 3, the President of Ukraine submitted a draft bill “On approval of decision on access of foreign subdivisions to Ukraine’s territory in 2006 for participation in the multinational military exercises” for the consideration of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine.

Defense Minister Hrytsenko expressed confidences that newly elected Verkhovna Rada to approve in on June 7.


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