Black Sea Fleet Day in Russia Date in the current year: May 13, 2016

Black Sea Fleet Day in Russia Black Sea Fleet Day is an annual celebration in the Russian Navy held on May 13. It commemorates the creation of the Black Sea Fleet in 1783.

The Black Sea Fleet is a large operational-strategic command of the Russian Navy that operates in the Black Sea and the Mediterranean Sea. It was founded on May 13, 1783 by Prince Grigory Potemkin. That same year, Potemkin founded the city of Sevastopol that became the Fleet's principal base.

During the Soviet era, the Black Sea Fleet was part of the Soviet Navy. After the dissolution of the Soviet Union, the major part of the Fleet fell under formal of jurisdiction of Ukraine as Sevastopol was situated in the Ukrainian territory. However, the majority of the officers were loyal to Russia.

The status of the Black Sea Fleet led to tensions between Russia and Ukraine. To ease them, the two governments signed the Partition Treaty which established two independent national fleets. Russia maintained the right to use Sevastopol until 2017.

However, in 2014 Russia annexed the Crimean Peninsula. 54 out of 67 Ukrainian ships were transferred to the Black Sea Fleet, and many members of Ukrainian Navy chose to pledge an oath to Russia and join the Black Sea Fleet.

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Black Sea Fleet Day in Russia, holidays in Russia, professional observance, Russian Navy