NATO ships begin 'routine' Black Sea exercises
NATO warships have begun what the alliance described on Friday as a routine schedule of exercises and port visits in the Black Sea planned long before the outbreak of the Georgia conflict.


NATO said a group of one Spanish, one German and one Polish ship entered the Black Sea on Thursday and was to be joined by a US frigate. "The three week deployment is routine in nature and has been planned for well over a year," NATO's Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers Europe (SHAPE) said in a statement. (Reuters)