On the morning of Monday 1 April, two NATO ships entered the Port of Odessa. The Spanish frigate Santa Maria (F81) and the Canadian frigate HMCS Toronto (FHH333) were moored at berths 18 and 19, the local news outlet Dumskaya reported.
Santa Maria and Toronto will remain in Odessa until the evening of 3 April at the latest. Both vessels were opened to visitors on Monday afternoon.
After their stay in Odessa, the ships will take part in a PASSEX (passing exercise) with ships from the Ukrainian Navy.
Santa Maria (F81) is the first of six Spanish frigates of the same class. It was built by the company Bazan on the basis of the American Oliver Hazard Perry-class frigate, and commissioned on October 1986. It is armed with various artillery and anti-aircraft guns, torpedoes, and Harpoon anti-ship missiles, and carries an SH-60 Seahawk helicopter.
HMCS Toronto is the fourth Halifax-class frigate in the Canadian Navy, and has been in service since July 1993. It is armed with artillery guns, torpedoes and missiles, and carries a Sikorsky SH-148 helicopter.
The French minesweeper Capricorne (M653) docked in Odessa on the morning of 23 March, the second visit in 2019 by a NATO ship from a country not bordering on the Black Sea. The first was by the American missile destroyer USS Donald Cook (DDG75) on 25 February.