US General: Russia must allow international observers access to exercises in Crimea

Russia must admit observers, including Western journalists, to the military exercise which will be held in the south of the country and in annexed Crimea. According to Reuters, this was the hard line presented by Lieutenant General Frederick Benjamin "Ben" Hodges, the commander of the United States Army in Europe.

Hodges said that Russia could emulate military exercises that were held under the guidance of the USA and its allies in Europe, which allowed the country to send observers.

"The Russians could really help make the problem simpler and provide some stability if they invited observers", Hodges said. "To be frank, this would give a lot and reduce anxiety.”

Another U.S. intelligence official called the absence of observers at the Russian exercise an "alarming event,” and hoped that this was just a mistake.

As previously reported, the Russian Federation deployed advanced S-400 Triumf anti-aircraft missile systems to the Crimea.

  Russia, Ukraine, Crimea, Russian military exercises