US notifies Turkey for warship passage through straits

US notifies Turkey for warship passage through straits

- Notification sent 15 days prior to activity in line with Montreux Convention, says diplomatic sources

News Service AA

The US on Friday sent diplomatic notification to Turkey for passage of its two warships through the Turkish straits, according to diplomatic sources.

"We were notified through diplomatic means 15 days in advance that two US warships would reach the Black Sea in accordance with the Montreux Convention," said the sources who asked not to be named due to restrictions on speaking to the media.

The sources said the ships will remain in the Black Sea until May 4.

According to a CNN report on Thursday, the US is considering deploying warships to the Black Sea as Russia continues to amass forces along its border with Ukraine.

Under terms of the Montreux Convention, the US as a non-Black Sea power is obligated to give Turkey prior notice before sending warships through the Bosphorus and Dardanelles, which connect the sea with the Marmara Sea, according to CNN.

The US is reportedly already carrying out reconnaissance flights above the Black Sea intended to monitor Russian naval activity and surveil potential troops movements in Crimea, which Moscow seized from Ukraine and annexed in 2014.

Russia has also been propping up separatist rebel forces in eastern Ukraine's Donbas region since that year. The ensuing fighting has seen more than 13,000 people killed in the past seven years, according to the UN.


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