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Ukraine Training Attack Dolphins for Navy, Official Says

Ukraine is running a special project to train sea creatures to take part in Navy missions, a news report said Thursday.

"At present 10 dolphins are being prepared to carry out special tasks in the Ukrainian state oceanarium in Sevastopol," an unidentified security services official told RIA-Novosti.

"The Ukrainian military regularly trains animals to search for objects at the bottom of the sea," the official said, adding that the dolphins will also be trained to attack raiders and ships by attaching knives or pistols to their heads.

The Soviet Navy used dolphins for similar purposes from 1973 onward, but after the Soviet collapse, control over the Black Sea naval bases where the animals were coached passed to Ukraine, RIA-Novosti reported.

On Thursday, the unidentified official said the Ukrainian military had kept up the animal-training programs since but that authorities had "not openly talked about them."

According to the news agency, there are only two centers for training attack dolphins in the world — one in Sevastopol, the other in San Diego, California.

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