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NATO monitors exercises of Russia's Baltic Fleet

22.04.2008 Source: en.rian.ru

NATO reconnaissance ships are monitoring large-scale exercises conducted by Russia's Baltic Fleet, a spokesman for the Russian Navy said on Tuesday.

"The ships, located in the vicinity of the exercise area, include the Danish patrol vessel Seleven, Swedish intelligence gathering ship Orion, and Polish intelligence gathering ship Navigator," Captain 1st rank Igor Dygalo said.

About 30 Russian combat ships, eight supply vessels and naval fighters and helicopters are participating in the second phase of a large-scale exercise in the Baltic Sea, which started on April 14.

"During a joint exercise on Tuesday, anti-submarine warfare ships and aircraft will conduct a simulated search-and-destroy mission," Drygalo said.

The second phase will culminate with a simulated beach landing, involving units of naval infantry, amphibious assault ships Minsk and Korolyov, and air-cushioned landing craft Mordovia and Yevgeny Kocheshkov.

After the current exercises, the Baltic Fleet will start preparations for international naval exercises BALTOPS in June-July and OPEN SPIRIT in August-September, the spokesman said.

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