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    Russian Navy to hold exercises in the Mediterranean in November

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    A naval task force from Russia's Northern Fleet will depart from its main base in Severomorsk in early November to participate in joint drills with the Black Sea Fleet in the Mediterranean, a senior Navy official said on Thursday.

    MOSCOW, October 30 (RIA Novosti) - A naval task force from Russia's Northern Fleet will depart from its main base in Severomorsk in early November to participate in joint drills with the Black Sea Fleet in the Mediterranean, a senior Navy official said on Thursday.

    "The task force from the Northern Fleet [headed by the Admiral Kuznetsov aircraft carrier] will join a naval task force from the Black Sea Fleet headed by the Moskva missile cruiser in the Mediterranean and conduct exercises simulating a sea battle between two opposing naval task forces," the source said.

    The group of warships from the Northern Fleet will spend a total of three months on the upcoming tour of duty in the Mediterranean and the Atlantic.

    "The main goals of the tour are to accomplish a number of operative and strategic tasks, to demonstrate Russia's presence in the world's oceans, and to pay visits to foreign ports," the official said, adding that the Moskva missile cruiser, for instance, would call at the port of Messina in Sicily.

    A task force from the Northern Fleet, consisting of the Admiral Kuznetsov aircraft carrier, the Udaloy class destroyers Admiral Levchenko and Admiral Chabanenko, as well as auxiliary vessels, conducted from December 2007 to February 2008 a two-month tour of duty in the Mediterranean Sea and the North Atlantic. (Russian naval task force completes exercise in the Atlantic - Image Gallery)

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