The forward deployed U.S. destroyer that was buzzed by Russian fighters in April has returned to the Black Sea, according to photographs of the ship crossing through the Bosphorus.
USS Donald Cook (DDG-75) entered the region on Dec. 26 and is part of an ongoing U.S. and NATO presence mission that has started in shortly after the Russian forced annexation of Crimea from Ukraine.
The ongoing Operation Atlantic Resolve, led in part by U.S. 6th Fleet, to demonstrate U.S., “commitment to the collective security of our NATO allies and support for our partners in Europe, in light of the on-going Russian intervention in Ukraine,” read a statement from U.S. 6th Fleet.
“Donald Cook’s presence in the Black Sea will serve to reaffirm the U.S. dedication to commitment towards strengthening the partnerships and joint operational capabilities amongst U.S., NATO and regional Black Sea partners.”
Cook was in the Black Sea in April when two Russian Sukhoi SU-24 Fencer fighters buzzed the ship in an action the Pentagon called “provocative” and “unprofessional.”
The ship completed its first U.S. 6th Fleet patrol from its new homeport in Rota, Spain in July.
U.S. ships operate under the 1936 Montreux Convention Regarding the Regime of the Straits.
Montreux rules call for warships from countries with out a coast on the Black Sea to depart after 21 days.