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Russia’s Baltic Fleet celebrates its 311th anniversary with parade

May 18, 2014, 16:06 UTC+3 BALTIYSK

More than 500 servicemen from ship-based and coastal formations of the fleet participated in the parade

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© ITAR-TASS/ Elena Nagornykh

BALTIYSK, May 18 /ITAR-TASS/. A parade of military forces on the occasion of the 311th anniversary of the Baltic Fleet was held at the main naval base of the oldest Russian naval force in the north-western Russian city of Baltiysk on Sunday. Commander of the Baltic Fleet Vice-Admiral Viktor Kravchuk reviewed the parade.

More than 500 servicemen from ship-based and coastal formations of the fleet participated in the parade. The commander said in a congratulatory message that today the Baltic Fleet served as a firm Russian stronghold in the west of the country and ensured stability of military and political situation and state interests of the country.

The Baltic Fleet has surface ships and submarine force, aviation, aerospace defence troops and coastal units. The fleet is replenished with most advanced warships equipped with state-of-art weapons and technical equipment, including patrol warship Yaroslav Mudry, corvettes Steregushchy (guarding), Soobrazitelny (smart) and Boikiy (courageous). One more corvette Stoikiy will be brought into service of the fleet in coming summer.

Fleet’s coastal troops are armed with combat vehicles, artillery gun systems and air defence systems as well as different advanced models of special and motor vehicles. For instance, the guards brigade of marines was armed with newest armoured personnel carriers APC-82a.

For the winter period of training in 2014 the Baltic Fleet forces have carried out around 20 planned military exercises and have held more than 100 missile, air defence missile and artillery gun drills. Baltic Fleet warships are resolving tasks in the Russian inter-fleet naval task force in the Mediterranean Sea. On the eve of the Sunday holiday the Baltic Fleet’s big landing ship Minsk sailed back to Baltiysk after a long sea mission within the country’s naval task force in the Mediterranean. For ten months of her latest sea mission the warship has sailed more than 35 thousand miles.

The fire drill results showed that the Baltic Fleet meets modern realities and can resolve different tasks not only in the near maritime area and on the coast, but also in remote sea and ocean areas, the commander stated.

Parade crews of high officers from Baltic naval base headquarters, naval sailors, marines from the fleet’s coastal troops passed in a festive march. A military orchestra of the Baltic naval base headquarters marched at the end of the military parade.

The Black Berets song company of marines performed after the parade at the Square of Baltic Glory.

Guests of the holiday are taken on tours of several Baltic Fleet warships, exhibitions of modern weapons and military hardware are held. Air defence missile systems S-300, new armoured personnel carriers APC-82a, torpedo launching and emergency rescue weaponry are put on display.

A new exposition dedicated to the fleet’s anniversary is held at the Baltic Fleet museum.

The Russian Baltic fleet came to rise on May 18, 1703 when a flotilla of 30 boats with soldiers of the Preobrazhensky and Semyonovsky regiments commanded by Emperor Peter the Great won their first victory over the Swedes. They seized two Swedish warships - Gedan and Astrild in the estuary of the Neva River. All participants of that battle were awarded with special medals with a famous saying that nothing is impossible.

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