17:38 GMT23 April 2021
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    NATO has ramped up its naval presence in the Baltic and Black Seas, Russia’s envoy to the Western defense alliance said on Friday.

    “We have registered a notable increase in the number of reconnaissance flights along our borders. What we now see is a permanent naval presence by NATO naval groups in the Baltic and Black Seas, which is seriously undermining European security,” Alexander Grushko said during a Moscow-Brussels teleconference organized by Russia Today.

    NATO’s naval buildup apparently reflects the growing Western concerns about Russia’s ongoing aerial campaign against Islamic State terrorists in Syria.

    On September 30, Russia launched its Air Force anti-terror operation in Syria at the request of President Bashar Assad’s government.

    Since the start of the operation, the Russian military have destroyed over a hundred terrorist targets, including command posts, ammunition depots, training camps and armored vehicles belonging to jihadists.

    On Wednesday, Russia first employed its Navy in the operation with four warships firing a total of 26 missiles at ISIL positions in Syria from the Caspian Sea.


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