Russian Pacific Fleet conducted anti-submarine and anti-terrorism drills under its long-distance mission, the naval group’s spokesman Roman Martov said Wednesday. The fleet for the drills comprised anti-submarine warfare ship Admiral Vinogradov, the oceanic rescue vessel Fotiy Krylov and the tanker Irkut.
The naval group left from the Vladivostok base in the far-eastern region for a long-distance mission on March 28, Tass news agency reported. The Pacific Fleet’s main ship, the Guards missile cruiser Varyag, is working as part of the Russian Navy’s Mediterranean grouping, the report added.
“The crews of the warships also held exercises on the naval group’s air defense, conducted drills of anti-terrorism units and practiced damage control situations,” Martov told Tass.
During the long-distance voyage, the fleet’s naval group is expected to make unofficial visits to five countries, the news agency reported without elaborating. The Pacific Fleet also plans to start a three-month mission to the Kuril islands this month to explore if the disputed islands could serve as a naval base as well.
Last month, Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu announced Moscow will deploy missile systems on the Kuril islands, claimed by Japan, as part of its military buildup in the far-eastern region. Russia reportedly plans to build 350 structures for military requirements on the Kuril islands of Iturup and Kunashir, called Etorofu and Kunashiri in Japan. The buildings will be constructed in 2016 and 2017.