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Russian amphibious assault ships enter La Manche

June 25, 2014, 17:27 UTC+3 MOSCOW

During their voyage across the Atlantic, the crews will continue improving their sea skills and combat teamwork and will practice joint actions in complex northern latitudes

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© ITAR-TASS/Yelena Nagornykh

MOSCOW, June 25. /ITAR-TASS/.  Two large amphibious assault ships from Russia’s Northern Fleet have entered La Manche on their voyage across the Atlantic, Northern Fleet spokesman, Captain 2nd Rank Yevgeny Kirillov said on Wednesday.

The Georgy Pobedonosets and Olenegorsky Gornyak amphibious assault ships are expected to reach the North Sea soon to sail further to the north-east Atlantic, Kirillov said.

During their voyage across the Atlantic, the crews “will continue improving their sea skills and combat teamwork” and will practice joint actions in complex northern latitudes, the spokesman said.

“In North Atlantic, the crews will perform a set of air defense combat training exercises,” Kirillov said.

Specifically, air defense artillery units will have to repel a potential enemy air attack, track and carry out a training attack on air targets, the spokesman said.

The Georgy Pobedonosets and Olenegorsky gornyak amphibious assault ships have covered a distance of over 57,000 nautical miles since they left their naval base in Severomorsk. In their long-distance voyage, the crews have held hundreds of ship-borne exercises and drills, including in interaction with the crews of the Baltic and Black Sea Fleets, the spokesman said.

The Russian amphibious assault ships have also numerously visited Black Sea Fleet bases and foreign ports, he said.

Snap checks in Russia's Armed Forces

Military drills and surprise combat readiness checks held in the Russian Armed Forces lately have demonstrated that Russian troops can efficiently perform real combat missions, Russia’s Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu said on Wednesday.

“The work, which the Defense Ministry carries out to raise the level of troops’ combat readiness and preparedness and equip the army and the fleet with armaments and military hardware, is yielding the necessary results,” Shoigu told a meeting of the Defense Ministry’s board.

The Russian Armed Forces have been involved in a series of large-scale military drills and snap combat readiness checks lately.

Almost 250 drills and about 8,000 firing exercises were held in the Russian Armed Forces from December 1, 2013 to May 31, 2014, Russia’s Defense Ministry said.

In particular, troops of the Western and Central Military Districts, as well as forces of some service arms were alerted in a combat readiness check from February 26 to March 3. The maneuvers involved 110,000 personnel, 90 aircraft and over 110 helicopters, almost 900 tanks and up to 80 warships and vessels.

Several large-scale military drills were held in June 2014. On June 7, Russian President ordered a combat readiness check of railway troops in the Central Military District and on June 21-28 all of the district’s troops and forces are taking part in the check. These drills involve over 65,000 servicemen, more than 180 aircraft and about 60 helicopters.

Plenty of attention was drawn to Russia’s large-scale military exercises in its Baltic exclave of Kaliningrad on June 10-20. The maneuvers were held along with NATO’s military exercises in three Baltic states and in the Baltic Sea.

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