Admiral Vladimir Vysotsky summed up Sunday the results of the Russian naval task force's two-month tour of duty in the Mediterranean Sea and the North Atlantic. The operation was the first large-scale Russian navy exercise in the Atlantic and the Mediterranean in 15 years.
"What is important is that we have appeared [in the Atlantic and the Mediterranean] at a scheduled time and not just that we appeared there. We'll do all we can to build up our presence where Russia has strategic interests," Vysotsky said, adding that Russia intended to carry out similar missions once every six months.
The flagship of Russia's Black Sea Fleet, the Moskva guided missile cruiser, joined up with Russian naval warships in the Mediterranean on January 18 to participate in the maneuvers in the Atlantic from January 28 to February 2.
Russia's naval task force comprised the Admiral Kuznetsov aircraft carrier, the Udaloy-Class destroyers Admiral Levchenko and Admiral Chabanenko, as well as auxiliary vessels.
Over 40 aircraft of Russia's Air Force, including Tu-160 Blackjacks, Tu-95MS Bears, Tu-22M3 Backfire C strategic bombers, A-50 Mainstay airborne early warning aircraft, Il-78 Midas aerial tankers, MiG-31 Foxhound long-range interceptors and Su-27 Flanker frontline fighter aircraft participated in the drills jointly with the navy.
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We have witnessed the total defeat of western Ukraine, Western nationalists and the West in general, which made the unfortunate decision to support the anti-government activity. They failed to realize that the collapse of Yanukovych means the collapse of Ukrainian unity. They set fire to their own home and planted a time bomb under Ukraine’s territorial integrity.