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    Russian Navy makes port call in Cuba

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    Three Northern Fleet warships are to arrive in Havana on Friday for the Russian Navy's first visit to Cuba since the Cold War.

    MOSCOW, December 19 (RIA Novosti) - Three Northern Fleet warships are to arrive in Havana on Friday for the Russian Navy's first visit to Cuba since the Cold War.

    The visit by the Admiral Chabanenko missile destroyer and two support ships, which will last until Tuesday, will "help enhance the traditionally friendly ties between the armed forces of the two countries," said Alexander Moiseyev, a counselor at the Russian Embassy in Cuba.

    Navy spokesman Igor Dygalo said the group command will meet with Cuban Navy officials, the mayor of Havana and Russian Embassy staff.

    The Russian sailors will lay wreaths to the monument to Cuban national hero Jose Marti and the Soviet Internationalist Soldier Memorial.

    Cubans will have an opportunity to visit the Russian ships.

    The visit to Cuba completes a Caribbean tour by Russian battleships, which included stops in Venezuela, Panama and Nicaragua.

    Russia announced last year that its Navy had resumed and would continue to build up a constant presence throughout the world.

    Meanwhile, another Northern Fleet group of ships starts a visit to Lisbon on Friday. After the visit, which will last until Monday, the task force will pass through the Strait of Gibraltar, visit several ports in the Mediterranean, and participate in joint exercises with Russia's Black Sea Fleet.

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