On Friday, Chief of General Staff Gen. Viktor Muzhenko affirmed that the Ukrainian Armed Forces have wrapped up surface-to-air missile tests in southern Ukraine. The head of Russia’s aviation watchdog Rosaviatsia, Alexander Neradko, affirmed that Ukraine has not sent any notifications about new missile firing drills in the Black Sea after 2nd of December. According to Neradko, Russia continue to monitor the airspace over Simferopol and the Black Sea. Earlier, Rosaviatsia said that Ukraine planned to hold missile exercises in the Simferopol flight information region (FIR) over the city of Simferopol and part of the Black Sea on December 1 and 2. It also issued a special notification about high-risk zones in that region. Later, Ukraine declared it was introducing more high-risk zones there.
Russian Transport Minister, Maksim Sokolov, on the sidelines of the exhibition Transport of Russia, affirmed that the Russian Transport Ministry has observed no air incidents in the airspace over Crimea due to Ukraine’s missile launches. On Thursday morning, the Ukrainian military started missile exercises, including live launches, near Ukraine’s border with Crimea. 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. Yesterday, Rosaviatsia also affirmed that Ukraine issued a new “notification to airmen” (NOTAM) on Wednesday evening to the effect it has moved the high-risk zones westwards, away from Russia’s territorial waters. The new zones were over international waters and Russia’s territorial waters are not affected. At the same time, Russian warships from the Black Sea Fleet reportedly took up positions off the Crimean Peninsula to provide air defense.