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Group of Russian Black Sea Fleet ships enters Mediterranean

August 05, 2015, 12:56 UTC+3 MOSCOW
The group, comprising the Moskva missile cruiser, the Pytlivy escort ship, the Ivan Bubnov large sea tanker and the Shakhtyor rescue tug, cast anchor at the Spanish port of Ceuta
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© ITAR-TASS/Valeriy Sharifulin

MOSCOW, August 5. /TASS/. A group of warships of Russia’s Black Sea Fleet (BSF) led by the Moskva missile cruiser has passed the Strait of Gibraltar and cast anchor at the Spanish port of Ceuta, BSF spokesman Captain 1st Rank Vyacheslav Trukhachev said on Wednesday.

"The group of the Black Sea Fleet’s warships comprising the Moskva missile cruiser, the Pytlivy escort ship, the Ivan Bubnov large sea tanker and the Shakhtyor rescue tug has passed the Strait of Gibraltar and arrived at the anchorage point in the area of the Spanish port of Ceuta," Trukhachev said.

After the Ivan Bubnov tanker’s call at Ceuta, it is planned to replenish the ships’ stock of water, fuel and food.

After the replenishment, the group of ships under the flag of Deputy Commander of the Black Sea Fleet, Vice Admiral Valery Kulikov will continue to perform its tasks in the region within the Russian Standing Naval force in the Mediterranean.

The group of the Black Sea Fleet warship has come to the Mediterranean after a series of drills in the Atlantic Ocean, including missile and naval gun firing practice.

Trukhachev said previously that the warships had 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.

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