MOSCOW, July 8 (RIA Novosti) – Russia’s Black Sea Fleet has started training for fighting an amphibious assault in light of the high concentration of NATO ships in the area, a representative of the Russian Navy told journalists Tuesday.
"Today, July 8, during a planned training of various Black Sea forces, coastal defense troops subdivisions have started drills for the defense of a coastal amphibious assault at the military training grounds on the Crimean Peninsula," the Russian fleet representative said.
The drills are taking place due to unprecedented NATO activity in the Black Sea, where the alliance has nine ships, the most in decades.
Russian missile and artillery troops have also been practicing attacking surface groups and assault troops from an aggressor at sea.
Some 20 military vessels are participating in the drills that started July 4. NATO's navy is holding a parallel training exercise at the same time near Bulgaria.
A source at the Russian Defense Ministry told RIA Novosti earlier that Russian naval aviation is tracking all NATO moves in the Black Sea.
The ships rotate in and out of the sea, because, according to the Montreux Convention, military ships from nations that do not have direct access to the Black Sea can only stay in the area for a maximum of 21 days. American frigate USS Taylor violated the convention earlier this year, exceeding the limit by 11 days.