BUCHAREST, Romania (AP) — Major NATO exercises in Eastern Europe have begun in Bulgaria involving 25,000 military personnel from more than 20 allied and partner countries.
The Saber Guardian 17 exercises are being led by U.S. Army Europe and run until July 20. The training will also take place in Hungary and Romania, including at the country's Mihail Kogalniceanu Air Base near the Black Sea. The opening ceremony was held Tuesday at the Novo Selo military camp in southern Bulgaria.
The drills aim to increase the interoperability of participating countries and demonstrate resolve and readiness to act in support of security and stability in the Black Sea region. There will be a total of 18 specialized exercises.
The Saber Guardian exercises have been held annually since 2013 in the Black Sea region.