The Russian Navy is launching several concurrent exercises, with Baltic and Black Sea ships and its Northern Fleet sailing out of their home ports across Europe, the Kremlin has announced.
More than 140 warships and support ships, as well as 60 aircraft and a total of 10,000 troops, will take part in the drills, according to the Russian Defense Ministry.
But the exercises have raised alarm in Western countries in light of tensions over Ukraine. NATO nations have deployed ships and aircraft and are ramping up planned deployments in response to the buildup of Russian troops on its border with Ukraine. Ireland has protested against Russia’s plan to hold live-fire exercises 240 kilometers off the Irish coast in February. Irish fishermen have pledged to disrupt the exercise, according to the BBC.
“We let them know that we are going to be fishing in our traditional fishing grounds and if it impacts their exercise it will be considered a peaceful protest,” he added. Patrick Murphy, chief executive of the Southern and Western Irish Fish Producers Organisation, said.
“We should have the right to go fishing there, and if we fish there, those boats, those warships, shouldn’t have war games.”
The press service of the Russian Northern Fleet issued two statements on Wednesday. The former said a detachment of warships and support vessels from the Northern Fleet entered the Barents Sea as part of an exercise with the Arctic Expeditionary Group of Forces and Troops. The statement said that among the ships was the cruiser RFS Marshal Ustinov (055), RFS Destroyer Vice Admiral Kulakov (626), RFS frigate Admiral Flota Kasatonov (461) and accompanying support ships.
A Royal Norwegian Air Force P-3C Orion from 333 Squadron sighted the three warships, which were accompanied by a supply ship Viazma and tug SB-406, the Norwegian Armed Forces said in a statement on Tuesday. The Russian ships were spotted at 12:20 p.m. Tuesday heading south along the Norwegian coast in waters north of Finnmark by the P-3C, which was on a routine patrol mission. The Norwegian military did not reveal how long the P-3C tracked the Russian ships, or provide details of where the ships might go, although it is likely that the ships were heading for the firing exercise. actual forecast off Ireland. He noted that Russia had announced that it would conduct major naval exercises.
Отряд боевых кораблей и судов обеспечения Северного флота вышел в Баренцево море в рамках начавшегося учения с Арктической экспедиционной группировкой сил и войск https://t.co/IiOsHEgw2F#Минобороны #АрмияРоссии #СФ #Учения pic.twitter.com/uaubgXbW06
— Минобороны России (@mod_russia) January 26, 2022
A second Russian Northern Fleet statement said it had begun exercises with the Arctic Expeditionary Strike Group, Northern Fleet Commander Adm. Alexander Moiseev supervising the exercises. During the exercise, the Russian Navy will assess the level of readiness of the command and control organizations of the Northern Fleet in planning and conducting actions to resolve crisis situations in the Arctic Ocean region. , according to the press release.
The Russian Navy will also assess the coordination of actions of naval battle groups and coastal troop units during joint training and combat missions in the Arctic and test tactics and methods for conducting combat and naval combat in the Arctic, so says the Northern Fleet. It will also test issues of protecting Northern Sea Route communications and protecting and defending Northern Fleet garrisons. The exercises will include combating imaginary terrorist groups, as well as how to block and destroy them. In addition to sea exercises, a number of exercises will take place in the coastal ranges of the Murmansk region.
Up to 30 ships and submarines from the Northern Fleet, along with 20 aircraft and 1,200 personnel, will take part in the exercise. Participating ships include destroyer RFS Severomorsk (619), RFS frigate Admiral Flota Sovetskogo Soyuza Gorshkov (454) and RFS landing ship Ivan Gren (135).
More than 20 ships of the Black Sea Fleet left Sevastopol and Novorossiysk for exercises in the Black Sea, the press service of the Southern Military District said in a press release on Monday. RFS deminers Ivan GolubetsRFS Ivan Antonov and RFS Valentine Pikul carried out the mine clearance of the RFS corvettes Suzdalets (071) and RFS Yeisk (054), and two corvettes conducted anti-submarine drills to combat simultaneous sea and air attacks against them, according to two statements released today. RFS frigates Admiral Essen (490) and RFS Ladney (861) and RFS corvettes Grayvoron (600), RFS Ingushetia (630) and RSF Naberezhnye Chelny (953) carried out air defense exercises with fighter jets of the Russian Air Force of the Southern Military District.
Meanwhile, 20 ships of the Baltic Fleet had left their home ports to carry out exercises in the Baltic Sea, the Western Military District’s press service said in a press release on Monday.
A separate statement on Monday revealed the departure from Baltiysk of the RFS corvettes Stoykiy (545) and RFS soobrazitelny (531) for a long-range deployment that includes participating in the large-scale Russian Navy exercise and ensuring naval presence and display of the Russian flag in various parts of the world. He added that the ships had taken on board counter-terrorism security detachments from the Baltic Fleet Marine Corps.
Отряд Кораблей балтийского флота в составе корветов «стойкий» и «Сообразительный» вышел в Море для выполнения задач Дальнего похода#Минобороны #АрмияРоссии #БФ #Корабли #ВМФ pic.twitter.com/HmkW4rwoH3
— Минобороны России (@mod_russia) January 24, 2022
In the Arabian Sea, the Russian Pacific Fleet Task Force which includes the cruiser RFS Varyag (011), RFS Destroyer Admiral Tributes (564) and mothership Boris Butoma, with the People’s Liberation Army Navy destroyer Urumqi (118) and mothership taihu (889) of the 39th escort task force, conducted the joint Russian-Chinese anti-piracy exercise “Pacific Sea-2022” on Monday. During the exercise, Russian and Chinese ships practiced tactical and scouting maneuvers, and conducted an operation to release Boris Butoma, which acted as seized vessel.
“The exercise further enriched the connotation of the comprehensive strategic partnership of coordination between China and Russia in the new era, accumulated useful experience for both sides to jointly carry out anti-piracy missions, and improved the capabilities and level of the two armies to jointly respond to maritime threats and maintain the security of strategic maritime channels,” the Chinese Ministry of National Defense said in a press release.
The Russian Pacific Fleet task force is now heading to the Mediterranean Sea to join the tanks of the landing ship RFS Olenegorskiy Gornyak (012) and RFS Georgi Pobedonosets (016), in addition to RFS Pyotr Morgunov (117) of the Northern Fleet and RFS Korolev (130), RFS Minsk (127), and RFS Kaliningrad (102) of the Baltic Fleet for an exercise.