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MOSCOW, July 29. /TASS/. A group of warships of Russia’s Black Sea Fleet (BSF) led by the Moskva missile cruiser is returning to the Mediterranean after a series of exercises in the Atlantic Ocean, BSF spokesman Captain 1st Rank Vyacheslav Trukhachev told reporters on Wednesday.
Other vessels in the group are the Pytlivy escort ship, the Ivan Bubnov tanker and the Shakhtyor rescue tug.
"At present, the warships and support vessels are returning to the Mediterranean where the ships’ group plans to call at the Spanish port of Ceuta in the first week of August to replenish the stock of water, fuel and food," the spokesman said.
Trukhachev said that the ships have conducted a number of exercises in the ocean to drill antisubmarine, anti-ship and antiaircraft defence, underway refuelling, as well as practiced the escort and defence of vessels from pirates and terrorists.
"A sea battle was one of the main exercise elements in which the Moskva crew test-fired a missile on a target simulating a surface ship. The cruise missile hit the target," he said. In an air defence drill, the Moskva missile cruiser fired the Fort antiaircraft missile system and naval guns on an aerial target. The Pytlivy crew also conducted artillery firing exercise hitting a surface and an air target," the Black Sea Fleet representative said.
In addition, he said, the Russian ships’ group has called at the ports of Luanda in Angola and Malabo in Equatorial Guinea.
Russia and Equatorial Guinea have recently signed an intergovernmental agreement on facilitating the procedure of calls of Russian warships to ports of the Republic of Equatorial Guinea. Russia’s military delegation led by Navy Commander-in-Chief Admiral Viktor Chirkov was visiting the Republic of Equatorial Guinea from July 19 to 22.