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Operation in Syria boosts interest in Russian ships carrying Kalibr missiles — official

Foreign customers of Russia's arms exporter take special interest in Project 636 submarines and Project 21632 Tornado missile ships

LE BOURGET , October 17. /TASS/. The Russian Navy’s participation in the operation in Syria has boosted foreign customers’ interest towards Russian ships armed with the missile complex Club - the export configuration of Kalibr cruise missiles, the chief delegate of Russia’s arms exporter Rosoboronexport, Yevgeny Odintsov, told TASS at the Euronaval-2016 show.

"The Russian Navy’s participation in the operation in Syria has boosted potential foreign customers’ interest in Russian ships capable of dealing effective, high accuracy strikes against targets deep inside enemy territory," Odintsov said.

In particular, he mentioned project 636 submarines. One Russian submarine of this type, Rostov-on-Don last December launched Kalibr missiles at facilities of the Islamic State (terrorist organization outlawed in Russia) from the Mediterranean.

"At the beginning of the 2000s the Club-S system (export configuration of the Kalibr system for submarines - TASS) lent a new quality to the Varshavyanka class submarines and confirmed the unique capabilities of that project in the context of its modernization. Project 636 and 877EKM submarines armed with the Club system are now organic to the naval forces of many countries," Odintsov said.

"Alongside this foreign customers have displayed interest in the missile-carrying ship of project 216332 Tornado. Upgraded ships of that project (the Russian Navy uses project 21631 ships; Tornado is the project’s export version - TASS) used Kalibr missiles to deliver strikes from the Caspian Sea," Odintsov said.

He pointed out that small surface ships armed with Kalibr missiles (export configuration called Club-N) "are of the greatest interest to the countries which are implementing large-scale naval programs or have considerable national interests in land-locked seas, large bays and insular areas. Among such countries there are some countries in the Persian Gulf, the Mediterranean, Southeast Asia and South America," he said.

The Russian Navy launched cruise missiles against terrorists in Syria in 2015 and 2016 from ships of project 21631 in the Caspian and Mediterranean seas.