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Russian troops in Crimea on high alert following Kiev’s missile launch preparations

November 30, 2016, 14:30 UTC+3

Ukraine’s firing exercises are a sort of a PR-move aimed at creating a nervous situation, according to a TASS source

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© Vitaliy Nevar/TASS

SEVASTOPOL, November 30. /TASS/. Russia’s air defense forces in Crimea are ready for Ukraine’s missile launches in the Black Sea and have been put on high alert, a source in the Crimean defense structures told TASS on Wednesday.

"Ukraine’s firing exercises are a sort of a PR-move aimed at creating a nervous situation but in any case the military perceive this as a real and potential threat and, therefore, the Russian air defense forces in Crimea have been placed on enhanced alert," the source said.

"This refers not only to ground-based but also to shipborne air defense forces as ships of the Black Sea Fleet are self-sustained combat units for repelling any threats," the source said.

The Russian aviation watchdog Rosaviatsia earlier said that Ukraine had unilaterally decided in violation of all international treaties to hold missile launches in Russia’s sovereign airspace near Crimea, in the area of civil and government planes’ routes, on December 1-2.

Ukraine issued a NOTAM (an aviation notice) on November 24 about the activation of dangerous zones in the airspace over planned missile launches on these dates. At the same time, the issue of closing the airspace over Crimea is not on the agenda: Rosaviatsia expects the illegitimate decisions to be cancelled.

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