U.S. European Command spokesman Navy Capt. Greg Hicks, director of Communication and Engagement, provided the following statement:
Exercise Sea Breeze 2014, a multinational maritime exercise in the Black Sea, is set to start Sept. 8, as representatives from five participating nations and Standing NATO Maritime Group TWO Task Unit 02 (SNMG2 TU.02) will gather at sea aboard USS Ross (DDG 71) for the exercise's opening ceremony.
Approximately 280 U.S. service members will participate in the event.
The exercise is scheduled to take place Sept. 8-10, with naval forces from participating countries working together in order to strengthen interoperability and improve maritime security.
Leaders from Ukraine and the U.S., co-hosts for the 13th iteration of the exercise, share sentiments about the progress of both the exercise and maritime security in the Black Sea that have occurred since the exercise's inception.
Much of the exercise will focus on maritime interdiction operations as a primary means to enhance maritime security. The other key components of the exercise focus on communications, search and rescue, force protection and navigation.
This year's participants include Ukraine, Georgia, Romania, Turkey, and the U.S., as well as three ships from Standing NATO Maritime Group TWO Task Unit 02 (SNMG2 TU.02): Canadian Halifax-class frigate HMCS Toronto (FFH 333); Spanish frigate ESPS Almirante Juan De Borbon; and Romanian frigate ROS Regele Ferdinand.