News / Europe

US to Lead Multinational Exercises in Ukraine

FILE - Members of the U.S. Army 173rd Airborne Brigade attend a welcome ceremony upon their arrival at a Lithuanian air force base in Siauliai, Lithuania, April 26, 2014. Troops from the brigade will be among those participating in exercises Rapid Trident
FILE - Members of the U.S. Army 173rd Airborne Brigade attend a welcome ceremony upon their arrival at a Lithuanian air force base in Siauliai, Lithuania, April 26, 2014. Troops from the brigade will be among those participating in exercises Rapid Trident
Carla Babb

The U.S. Defense Department  has announced upcoming multinational military exercises inside Ukraine.

The U.S.-led drill later this month in western Ukraine marks the first deployment of American ground troops to the nation since Russia’s annexation of Ukraine’s Crimea in March and subsequent hostilities between Ukrainian troops and what are widely seen as Russia-backed rebels and Russian troops in eastern Ukraine. Moscow denies direct involvement in the conflict.

The exercise, dubbed Rapid Trident, will take place September 15-26 in Yavoriv, Ukraine.  About 1,300 personnel from 15 nations are taking part in the annual exercise, including 200 U.S. soldiers.

Pentagon spokesman Colonel Steve Warren says the exercise will increase interoperability among the United States, Ukraine and other participating nations.

”It’s a peacekeeping exercise. They’re also going to work on some key tasks like contouring IEDs, convoy operations and patrolling,” said Warren.

The U.S. troops participating will be from the 173rd Airborne Brigade, based in Italy.

Other nations taking part in Exercise Rapid Trident range from Canada to Spain to Latvia.

Prior to Rapid Trident, the U.S. will partner with Ukraine for a military exercise on the USS Ross in the Black Sea. That exercise, dubbed Sea Breeze, will run September 8-10.  Some 280 U.S. service members will be participating with personnel from Ukraine, Turkey, Georgia and Romania.

The exercises come as President Barack Obama condemned Russia's intervention in Ukraine as a "brazen assault" on the country's integrity Wednesday.

Speaking in Estonia, Obama assured the former Soviet republic, along with two others, Latvia and Lithuania, which now are members of NATO, that the alliance would defend them against any aggression by Moscow.

"Just as we refused to accept smaller European nations being dominated by bigger neighbors in the last century, we reject any talk of spheres of influence today.  And just as we never accepted the occupation and illegal annexation of the Baltic nations, we will not accept Russia’s occupation and illegal annexation of Crimea or any part of Ukraine," said Obama.

NATO agreed in 1997 not to position its troops on Russia's border; but, Obama said that declaration will be open to discussion at Thursday's NATO summit in Wales because "circumstances clearly have changed."

You May Like

Video One Year After Thai Coup, No End in Sight for Military Rule

Since carrying out the May 22, 2014 coup, the general has retired from the military but is still firmly in charge More

Goodbye, New York

This is what the fastest-growing big cities in America have in common More

Job-Seeking Bangladeshis Risk Lives to Find Work

The number of Bangladeshi migrants on smugglers’ boats bound for Southeast Asian countries has soared in the past two years More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Andrew from: Oklahoma
September 04, 2014 12:14 PM
No nation wants hostile nation on theirs border. Same applies to Russia as well as United States

by: Andy from: US
September 04, 2014 10:17 AM
200 paratroops? Speed bumps.

Send a US armored division plus AH-64s, A-10s and Patriot missile batteries

by: Mark from: Virgiinia
September 03, 2014 10:28 PM
Okay, the two sides have agreed to a cease-fire... they are not trying to kill each other right now, tensions are starting to simmer to a low boil instead of a rapid boil.

BUT WAIT.... Operation Rapid Trident is coming!!! Let us light the burners once more and raise the tension levels again!!

Let me see, every year on the Korean Peninsula, American and S. Korean forces conduct exercises that never fails to get N. Korea's rhetoric machine cranked up. For weeks during and after the exercises we hear the Boy Emperor of Pyongyang bluster and fluster over alleged S. Korean plans to invade the North. Do we not think the same will not occur in Ukraine, with Moscow making accusations that NATO is trying to stir the pot of violence once again...? Just give Putin ANY reason to start the whole ball of wax rolling once more, shall we...?

Whatever good intentions we may have over these exercises, we sure have some lousy timing.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Turkey's Main Opposition Party Hopes for Election Breakthroughi
X
May 22, 2015 10:23 AM
Turkey’s main opposition Republican People’s Party has sought an image change ahead of the June 7 general election. The move comes after suffering successive defeats at the hands of the Islamist-rooted AK Party, which has portrayed it as hostile to religion. Dorian Jones reports from the western city of Izmir.
Video

Video Turkey's Main Opposition Party Hopes for Election Breakthrough

Turkey’s main opposition Republican People’s Party has sought an image change ahead of the June 7 general election. The move comes after suffering successive defeats at the hands of the Islamist-rooted AK Party, which has portrayed it as hostile to religion. Dorian Jones reports from the western city of Izmir.
Video

Video Europe Follows US Lead in Tackling ‘Conflict Minerals’

Metals mined from conflict zones in places like the Democratic Republic of Congo are often sold by warlords to buy weapons. This week European lawmakers voted to force manufacturers to prove that their supply chains are not inadvertently fueling conflicts and human rights abuses. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
Video

Video Class Tackles Questions of Race, Discrimination

Unrest in some U.S. cities is more than just a trending news item at Ladue Middle School in St. Louis, Missouri. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, it’s a focus of a multicultural studies class engaging students in wide-ranging discussions about racial tensions and police aggression.
Video

Video Mind-Controlled Prosthetics Are Getting Closer

Scientists and engineers are making substantial advances towards the ultimate goal in prosthetics – creation of limbs that can be controlled by the wearer’s mind. Thanks to sophisticated sensors capable of picking up the brain’s signals, an amputee in Iceland is literally bringing us one step closer to that goal. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Afghan Economy Sinks As Foreign Troops Depart

As international troops prepare to leave Afghanistan, and many foreign aid groups follow, Afghans are grappling with how the exodus will affect the country's fragile economy. Ayesha Tanzeem reports from the Afghan capital, Kabul.
Video

Video Poverty, Ignorance Force Underage Girls Into Marriage

The recent marriage of a 17-year old Chechen girl to a local police chief who was 30 years older and already had a wife caused an outcry in Russia and beyond. The bride was reportedly forced to marry and her parents were intimidated into giving their consent. The union spotlighted yet again the plight of many underage girls in developing countries. Zlatica Hoke reports poverty, ignorance and fear are behind the practice, especially in Asia and Africa.
Video

Video South Korea Marks Gwangju Uprising Anniversary

South Korea this week marked the 35th anniversary of a protest that turned deadly. The Gwangju Uprising is credited with starting the country’s democratic revolution after it was violently quelled by South Korea’s former military rulers. But as Jason Strother reports, some observers worry that democracy has recently been eroded.
Video

Video California’s Water System Not Created To Handle Current Drought

The drought in California is moving into its fourth year. While the state's governor is mandating a reduction in urban water use, most of the water used in California is for agriculture. But both city dwellers and farmers are feeling the impact of the drought. Some experts say the state’s water system was not created to handle long periods of drought. Elizabeth Lee reports from Ventura County, an agricultural region just northwest of Los Angeles.
Video

Video How to Clone a Mammoth: The Science of De-Extinction

An international team of scientists has sequenced the complete genome of the woolly mammoth. Led by the Swedish Museum of Natural History in Stockholm, the work opens the door to recreate the huge herbivore, which last roamed the Earth 4,000 years ago. VOA’s Rosanne Skirble considers the science of de-extinction and its place on the planet
Video

Video Blind Boy Defines His Life with Music

Cole Moran was born blind. He also has cognitive delays and other birth defects. He has to learn everything by ear. Nevertheless, the 12-year-old has had an insatiable love for music since he was born. VOA’s June Soh introduces us to the young phenomenal harmonica player.

VOA Blogs