President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelenskyy took part in the festivities on the occasion of the Day of the Naval Forces of the Armed Forces of Ukraine in Odesa.
"I am always happy to be in the beautiful and sunny Odesa, and especially today, on this festive day for the Ukrainian Navy. Today the whole country congratulates the guards of the sea borders of our Homeland on their professional holiday. Brave and indomitable people who stand day and night to defend the south of our country. Those who, quoting the Navy march, "will stand for the Black Sea, for our wonderful and charming Crimea". These are our Ukrainian navy men. We are proud of you. We thank you," the President of Ukraine said.
The Head of State thanked the navy men for their service and honored the memory of those who defended Ukraine at the cost of their own lives with a moment of silence.
Volodymyr Zelenskyy noted that the role of the Ukrainian Navy in the defense capabilities of our state cannot be overestimated.
"Crews of ships, boats and naval aviation, naval units - we will never allow anyone to destroy the Black Sea security system. And our state goal is to systematically increase your power. We know that in previous years there were attempts to destroy and drown the Ukrainian Navy in many senses of this word. I will not allow it. I will do my best for the Ukrainian Navy to be an example of power, modernity and become a real pride of Ukraine. For us to be a maritime state not in distant memories of the past, but in the real present and the near future," the President stressed.
According to him, the new commander of the Navy, Rear Admiral Oleksiy Neizhpapa, has been commissioned to ensure the combat readiness of the Navy and equip it with missile weapons as the main deterrent.
The President informed that the authorities carry out active development of naval bases and educational institutions, arrangement of permanent deployment locations of Navy combat units, development of national navy facilities, restoration, modernization and supply of new weapons and military equipment.
"State tests of the Ukrainian missile system "Neptune" are very important. It will make us an even stronger player in the Black Sea and the Sea of Azov. "Our immediate plans are to receive the Island and Mark VI boats as part of military assistance from the United States," Volodymyr Zelenskyy said.
The President also thanked all international partners for their continued support of Ukraine.