0628 GMT May 26, 2022
"These actions and NATO’s increased activities near our borders cannot be ignored by our military, which is responsible for the security of our country," the Russian presidential spokesman pointed out, TASS reported.
When asked about whether the participation of the Russian Baltic Fleet’s warships in drills could be viewed as a response to the deployment of NATO’s forces to Eastern Europe and the Baltic states, Peskov advised reporters to address this question to Russia’s Defense Ministry.
"After all, there is a constant process of drills, maneuvers and military development that has never ceased and will be continued," the Kremlin spokesman said.
The press office of the Russian Baltic Fleet reported earlier on Monday that the Fleet’s task force made up of the corvettes Stoiky and Soobrazitelny had departed from the naval base of Baltiysk for long-distance deployment to participate in naval drills under the general command of Navy Commander-in-Chief Admiral Nikolay Yevmenov, ensure naval presence and demonstrate the St. Andrew’s (Russian naval) flag in various parts of the world ocean.
In compliance with the 2022 plan of the Russian Armed Forces’ training, a series of naval drills will be held in all the areas of responsibility of the navy’s fleets.
The naval maneuvers will focus on measures by the navy and the Aerospace Force to protect Russia’s national interests in the world ocean and counter military threats to Russia from the direction of seas and oceans.
The Ukrainian Ministry of Foreign Affairs on Monday accused the United States of "excessive caution" for ordering family members of Kiev Embassy staff to leave the country, Fox News reported.
"We have taken note of @StateDept’s decision re departure of family members of @USEmbassyKyiv staff," Ukraine spokesman Oleg Nikolenko tweeted. "While we respect right of foreign nations to ensure safety & security of their diplomatic missions, we believe such a step to be a premature one & an instance of excessive caution."
The United Kingdom is also bringing home "some embassy staff and dependents".
In a subsequent tweet, Nikolenko highlighted that the European Union is leaving its diplomatic staff and their families in Ukraine.
The posts from Nikolenko come as the United States ordered family members of employees at the United States Embassy in Kiev to leave the nation on Monday. It also authorized the voluntary departure of U.S. government employees in Ukraine. The State Department issued a "Do Not Travel" advisory for Ukraine.
As Russia, led by President Vladimir Putin, amasses more and more military personnel and equipment on Ukraine's border, the United States and other Western allies are sending military assets to North Atlantic Treaty Organization members near Ukraine.
NATO said that it is "sending additional ships and fighter jets" to Eastern Europe. This includes F-16s from Denmark, naval forces from Spain, and F-35s from the Netherlands. Meanwhile, the United States is considering "increasing its military presence" in Eastern Europe – potentially with thousands of troops – and France is ready to send troops to Romania, which borders Ukraine to the south.