UK sends a pair of ships to Black Sea in show of solidarity
The United Kingdom plans to send two warships to the Black Sea next month, as tensions between Russia and Ukraine increase. This is reported by The Sunday Times based on sources in the British Navy.
According to the newspaper, a destroyer armed with anti-aircraft missiles will go from the Mediterranean to the Black Sea, along with an anti-submarine frigate.
F-35B fighter planes and helicopters are ready on the aircraft carrier HMS Queen Elizabeth to support the two ships in case of threat from Russian troops.
The British carrier should actually stay in the Mediterranean because of an international treaty prohibiting carriers from entering the Black Sea, The Times said. But by sending the ships to the Black Sea, the UK wants to show solidarity with NATO allies and Ukraine.
“The UK and our international allies are unswerving in our support for Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity,” said a Ministry of Defense spokesman to the British newspaper.
Tensions between Moscow and Kiev have intensified in recent weeks after Russia decided to send large numbers of tanks and other equipment towards the Ukrainian border. Since 2014, Pro-Russian separatists and the Ukrainian army have been fighting for control in eastern Ukraine. Dozens of people have died in confrontations this year alone.