The Black Sea Will Never Be 'NATO's Sea', Kremlin Vows

Liz Truss, who briefly served as the UK's Prime Minister in 2022, has this week called for Ukraine to be fast-tracked into NATO. "I also believe we should fast-track Ukraine's membership of NATO. We should have done it years ago, but the best time to do it will be now," Truss emphasized in a speech at a Heritage Foundation event.

The Kremlin has responded firmly in the face of these recent calls, which have also come from Polish leadership and of course Ukrainian officials, by pledging that the Black Sea will 'never be NATO's sea', according to state media.

AP image of Russian Navy Black Sea drills.
AP image of Russian Navy Black Sea drills.

Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov on Thursday said that "The Black Sea will never be a 'NATO sea.' This is a common sea for all coastal states, it should be a sea of cooperation, interaction and security. And it should have indivisible security," Peskov said.

"The Kremlin believes that NATO and demilitarization are mutually exclusive concepts," he added, suggesting that the Western military alliance is a threat to peace and not its solution. 

The specific references to 'ownership' of the Black Sea came in specific response to provocative words of  Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba, who urged that allied powers turn the Black Sea into a "NATO sea". Ironically enough he at the same time called for its demilitarization.

Last month there was a rare downing of a US Reaper drone after the Pentagon says it was harrassed by a pair of Russian Su-27 Flanker jets.

The $32 million drone crashed into the Black Sea after being sprayed with jet fuel as the Russian warplanes passed close by. US analysts said the maneuver had never been seen before, and was enough to damage the Reaper to the point of it having to be put down.

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