US Marines, Romanian troops hold Black Sea exercises

US Marines launch a Stinger missile at the Capu Midia Surface to Air Firing Range, on the Black Sea coast in Romania, Monday, March 20,

A Romanian female soldier adjusts her helmet before taking part in weapons training with US Marines female counterparts at the Capu Mid

A Romanian female soldier adjusts her helmet before taking part in weapons training with US Marines female counterparts at the Capu Mid

A Romanian female soldier, left, and a US Marines female counterpart aim after switching weapons during training at the Capu Midia Surf

US Marines fire a mortar at the Capu Midia Surface to Air Firing Range, on the Black Sea coast in Romania, Monday, March 20, 2017. Abou

US Marines launch a Stinger missile at the Capu Midia Surface to Air Firing Range, on the Black Sea coast in Romania, Monday, March 20,

CAPU MIDIA, Romania (AP) — U.S. Marines and Romanian troops are taking part in joint exercises on the Black Sea coast.

In one maneuver Monday, they launched a Stinger missile at a surface-to-air firing range.

There are 450 Marines and 750 Romanian troops participating in the exercises to simulate defense of the Black Sea coastline and urban areas.

At one point, a Romanian soldier and a Marine shared a laugh while momentarily switching their weapons at the Capu Midia range.

The Spring Storm 17 exercises aim to increase interoperability of Romanian and U.S. troops in a region where NATO members are uneasy after Russia's interventions in Ukraine.

The USS Carter Hall, LCAC Landing Craft Air Cushion and Assault Amphibious Vehicles are in Romania as part of the training, which began Thursday and ends Wednesday.