The Russian Navy began on Thursday the largest naval maneuvers carried out so far in the central Pacific Ocean. This is stated in a statement from the Russian Defense Ministry, in which it is specified that the exercises are taking place in “an area of the sea far away” from the coast. “Tactical groups of ships of the Russian fleet advanced about four thousand kilometers out to sea until they reached the designated area and deployed units to undertake training tasks,” the military note indicates.
Twenty warships take part in the maneuvers, as well as submarines and support ships. Among them are the flagship of the fleet, the missile-armed cruiser “Variag”, the large anti-submarine vessel “Admiral Panteleyev”, the frigate “Marshal Shaposhnikov, the corvettes” Gromki “,” Sovershenni “, and” Aldar Tsidenzhápov ” as well as the ship of the measuring system »Marshal Krilov«.
20 aircraft have also been involved, including the Tu-142M3 long-range anti-submarine attack, the Mig-31BM high-altitude fighters and other aircraft of the Russian Air Force. In command of the entire operation is the commander-in-chief of the Pacific Fleet, Admiral Sergei Avakiants.
The Russian Defense Ministry has also pointed out that these are “operational exercises of very different forces.” According to the statement, “the task consists of directing a heterogeneous contingent of forces at a considerable distance from the bases on land (…) to search for and detect submarines and groups of ships.”
The former chief of staff of the Russian Navy, Admiral Victor Krávchenko, explained that the current maneuvers in the Pacific “are unprecedented because of their size (…) there have been no exercises so far that involved so many forces.” In statements to the Interfax agency, Krávchenko pointed out that “these maneuvers, in addition to military tasks, also have geopolitical objectives. Russia shows the capabilities of the forces and means of the Pacific Fleet at a considerable distance from the coastal infrastructure. In his words, “we thus show the capabilities of the Pacific Fleet to both the United States and Japan and to everyone in general, including NATO, which has shown interest in the Asian theater of military operations.”
The Russian admiral also stressed that “the ships at the disposal of the Pacific Fleet allow solving tasks to prevent threats from the sea.”
Last April, in the midst of a spiral of tension caused by the deployment of Russian troops along the border with Ukraine, the Black Sea was also the scene of major naval maneuvers by the Russian Navy. More than 20 Russian warships took part in the naval exercises in the Black Sea, together with the aviation of the Southern Military District.