KIEV, Ukraine, Dec. 1 (UPI) -- Ukraine began surface-to-air missile tests Thursday over the Black Sea, after Russia threatened to shoot the projectiles down.
The Ukrainian military declared the tests of the S-300 medium-range missiles a success.
"Sixteen Ukrainian missiles were launched. All of them have reached their targets," said Svyatoslav Tsegolko, spokesman for President Petro Poroshenko.
Earlier this week, Ukraine defined the area of the tests, which the Russian Ministry of Defense said "violates the territorial sea borders of the Russian Federation." Although the missiles came within 18 miles of Crimean airspace, Ukraine moved the perimeter of the test area, apparently to calm Russian concerns, Russia's air transport agency reported.
The Russian Foreign Ministry said Thursday the tests set a "dangerous precedent," news outlet RT reported Thursday.
Crimea, formerly Ukrainian territory, was annexed in 2014 by Russia.
"I want to emphasize that the launches are taking place in open sea over Ukrainian airspace, in full accordance with international law," Poroshenko said. "The launches will go on regardless of any statement released by Moscow. The only reason that makes us conduct these exercises is the need to be consistently ready for any full-scale invasion from the side of our aggressive neighbor."
Russian warships of the Black Sea fleet took up positions west of Crimea to provide air defense over Russian territory, and navy personnel were put on combat alert.