Russia holds Largest Naval Exercise since Cold War in Black- and Mediterranean Seas.
Christof Lehmann (nsnbc) The Press office of the Russian Ministry of Defense informed that Russia has begun large-scale naval and anti-terrorism exercises in the Mediterranean and Black Seas. The exercises, which last until 29 January, involve warships from the Northern Baltic, Black Sea and Pacific Fleets.
It is the first time since the end of the so-called “cold war”, that exercises of this magnitude are being held by Russian naval forces. The exercises are designed for practicing inter-services operations outside Russia and focus among other on anti submarine warfare, anti ship warfare, air defense and counter-terrorism.
Also taking part in the exercises are amphibian ships and forces, troop carriers and airborne forces including paratroopers, aiming at acquiring necessary marine combat skills in joint operations.
The exercise is not only significant because it is the largest of its kind since the end of the cold war. The exercise is also significant because it held against the backdrop of large US naval deployments in the Eastern Mediterranean and the crisis in Syria.
Both US as well as German and other NATO members naval forces, who have been deployed to the Eastern Mediterranean over the last 20 months, have repeatedly been accused of facilitating smuggling operations and for supporting the infiltration of arms and terrorists into Lebanese and Syrian territories.
Christof Lehmann – nsnbc -21.01.2013