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Embassy slams London's reaction to Russian sub in English Channel

June 09, 2016, 9:44 UTC+3 LONDON

According to the Russian embassy, the government's reaction was aimed at scaring people in the UK with an alleged threat coming from Russia

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Russia's Stary Oskol submarine in St.Petersburg

Russia's Stary Oskol submarine in St.Petersburg

© Vitaly Nevar/TASS

LONDON, June 9. /TASS/. The Russian embassy in London has recalled the British government's reaction to the passage of a Russian submarine through the Straits of Dover and the English Channel as an instance of practical actions aimed at scaring people in the UK with an alleged threat coming from Russia.

"Her Majesty's government is making much noise about a routine passage of the Russian submarine in international waters," the embassy tweeted. "This is Project Fear in action because there is enough space for everyone to navigate there."

The Sun said earlier on the same day the HMS Kent was dispatched to the North Sea to escort the diesel-electric multirole submarine Stary Oskol and the towboat accompanying it and proceeded by its side towards the Straits of Dover, which is the narrowest section of the English Channel.

The tabloid indicated this was the first time in more than a decade that a Russian submarine had been tracked down on the approaches to the English Channel.

British Defense Secretary Michael Fallon came up with words of praise for the actions of the Royal Navy, saying: "This shows that a vigilant watch in international and territorial waters to keep Britain safe and protect us from potential threats."

The frigate Kent's commanding officer, Daniel Thomas said: "Locating this submarine was a combined effort with NATO allies and shadowing such units is routine activity for the Russian Navy."

He added that the frigate continued to escort the submarine as it conducted its passage, "providing a visible presence."

In the meantime, the Russian Defense Ministry voiced its surprise over the media reports on the situation around the submarine and the official reaction to it.

"The Russian Defense Ministry is surprised that the British Royal Navy and its NATO allies had to take joint efforts to discover a submarine, which was moving up-top at a slow speed," the ministry said.

"It would be strange if the sub had gone unnoticed by the British Royal Navy and its NATO allies. The more so that the merchant ships from various countries, which were on head-on and parallel courses, stuck to the long-standing maritime tradition of welcoming our sailors in the Barents, Norwegian and North Seas during the several days of the journey," the Russian Defense Ministry said.

The Staryi Oskol diesel electric submarine (project 636.3) is sailing to its home base at the Russian Black Sea fleet after trials in the Baltic and North fleets. The sub is moving up-top at a slow speed and is being escorted by the Altai towboat, the ministry added.

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