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Russian naval ships thwart enemy attack in Mediterranean drills

The drills focused on "fighting a notional enemy’s aircraft, helicopters and unmanned aerial vehicles"
Guided missile frigate Admiral Makarov  Andrei Gryaznov/TASS
Guided missile frigate Admiral Makarov
© Andrei Gryaznov/TASS

MOSCOW, June 28. /TASS/. Russian naval ships repelled a notional enemy’s attack and practiced air defense during drills in the Mediterranean Sea, Russia’s Defense Ministry reported on Monday.

The drills involved the missile cruiser Moskva, the guided missile frigates Admiral Essen and Admiral Makarov and the diesel-electric submarines Stary Oskol and Rostov-on-Don. The naval maneuvers are running amid the entry of the UK Navy’s aircraft carrier Queen Elizabeth with ten deck-based US F-35 fighters under the British command into the Mediterranean Sea.

"In the course of the joint exercise of the Russian Navy’s standing Mediterranean taskforce and aviation of Russia’s Aerospace Force that kicked off in the eastern Mediterranean on June 25, the warships’ crews practiced repelling enemy air attack weapons and providing shipborne air defense. The air defense teams sharpened their skills of thwarting air attacks," the press office said in a statement.

The drills focused on "fighting a notional enemy’s aircraft, helicopters and unmanned aerial vehicles," the statement says.

Under the drills’ scenario, the warships jointly with the submarines Stary Oskol and Rostov-on-Don and Tu-142MK and Il-38 anti-submarine warfare planes, Tu-22M3 long-range bombers and MiG-31K fighters are accomplishing combat training tasks to provide security for Russia's Hmeymim airbase and the Russian Navy’s Tartus naval facility in Syria, the Defense Ministry reported.

MiG-31 fighters with Kinzhal hypersonic missiles conduct electronic launches in Mediterranean

The MiG-31K fighters carrying Kinzhal hypersonic missiles and Tu-22M3 long-range bombers performed training flights escorted by Su-35 and Su-34 fighter aircraft during the drills in the eastern Mediterranean, the statement says.

"In the course of the joint exercise, the crews of the MiG-31K fighters capable of employing the latest Kinzhal hypersonic missiles and the Tu-22M3 long-range bombers performed regular training flights in the eastern Mediterranean, accomplishing the tasks of mastering the airspace in the maritime zone," the ministry specified.

In the course of the joint maneuvers, "the MiG-31K fighters conducted electronic missile launches against the notional enemy," the statement says.

In their flights, the MiG-31K fighters and the Tu-22M3 long-range bombers were escorted by the Russian Su-35 fighter jets and Su-34 fighter-bombers, it added.

The training flights are focused on testing aircraft and equipment in complex climatic conditions, including in high temperatures. The pilots are also practicing lengthy flights over the water surface, the Russian Defense Ministry reported.