20:11 GMT +329 March 2017
    British Navy and Air Force escort Russian warships Admiral Kuznetsov and Pyotr Veliky

    'A Very Serious Military Mission': Why NATO Warships 'Escorted' Russia's Carrier

    © Photo: The UK Ministry of defence
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    The Russian aircraft carrier Admiral Kuznetsov was followed by more than 50 NATO ships on its way to Syria and back; this was by no means "an easy walk" for those vessels, Russian military commentator Viktor Baranets told Sputnik.

    Su-33 and MiG-29K fighters aboard Admiral Kuznetsov heavy aircraft carrier in the Mediterranean Sea.
    © Sputnik/ Press service of the Northern Fleet/Andrey Luzik
    In an interview with Sputnik, Russian military commentator Viktor Baranets said that the very fact that the Russian aircraft carrier Admiral Kuznetsov was followed by more than 50 NATO ships indicates the alliance's drive to pursue its own agenda with respect to the Russian warship.

    The interview came after commander of the cruiser Sergey Artamonov said that Russia's aircraft carrier Admiral Kuznetsov, which has recently returned from Syria to the country's northern port city of Severomorsk, was followed by more than 50 NATO ships on its way to Syria and back home.

    "During the trip, we detected the presence of 50-60 NATO ships close to us. In some places, we were followed by 10-11 [NATO ships] simultaneously," Artamonov said in an interview with the Russian newspaper Argumenty i Fakty.

    Commenting on the foreign fleets' increased interest in the  Admiral Kuznetsov, Viktor Baranets said that NATO ships were conducting a "serious military mission" while "escorting" the Russian aircraft carrier.

    "It was important for them to see what a Russian warship looks like, and to know all about its performance characteristics, including the speed, the warplanes' takeoff and the engines' operations, which is of great importance to [NATO] submarines," he said.

    "In order to see that the Admiral Kuznetsov has left the Mediterranean Sea, one can use satellite surveillance rather than send warships to the area," he said.

    "For them, escorting the Admiral Kuznetsov is not just an easy walk; it is a very serious military mission. They detect signals from the Russian aircraft carrier, track her maneuvering and so on," he said.

    Russia's naval group, consisting of the Admiral Kuznetsov, the Pyotr Veliky battle cruiser, the Severomorsk and the Admiral Kulakov anti-submarine destroyer, and support vessels, left for Syria in October 2016 to participate in counterterrorism operations.

    On January 6, Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered the group to return to Russia's Northern Fleet base after a new Syrian ceasefire was announced on December 29. The group returned to the base on February 8.

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    military mission, warplanes, warships, submarines, aircraft carrier, Admiral Kuznetsov, NATO, Russia
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    • avatar
      I bet they were skeered by all those ships following. Haha lol
    • avatar
      One of the following UK ships blew its engine trying to keep up @30 knots in warm water it was reported that it will require a complete engine refit at the same cost as the original price for the complete ship 1.25 Billion pounds.

      Or was that a strategic move as that ship has been tagged to look after the carrier but needs a very expensive fix to keep up!
    • avatar
      Crafty Ruskies knew that UK destroyer couldn't keep up they must of had a great laugh in the mess hall that evening.
    • avatar
      Good show Russia! And US's terrorist proxies hot some serious beating.
    • American Socialist
      Russia hasn't projected power since the Cold War.
      China is on it's way to doing the same with it's Aircraft Carriers.

      the reigning super power doesn't like this.
    • avatar
      A drone could have more cheaply captured video. What a waste of NATO monies.
      Or perhaps they went along to learn how real aircraft carriers should operate. Letting the feeders alone unless they bite.
    • Arius Armenian
      NATO drama queens, as usual.
    • Arius Armenianin reply toAmerican Socialist(Show commentHide comment)
      American Socialist, Yes. The days of the Eastern powers bending their knees to the West are over.
    • Gentle Eagle
      Rubbing off on some Russian might. Seeking attention as always. Scoundrels!!!
    • avatar
      Newdays, A drone could not gather what one would be gathering. You want to gather all the electronic emissions during normal cruise and while deploying any systems they may use including prior to launch and recovery of the aircraft. You would also want below water sound signatures for vessel in question. They were basically cataloging everything they can on the ship in question. I think the Russian's pretty much mastered this process during the cold war with their Trawlers that were always shadowing any warship movements. Nothing new in the zoo. The only difference was that it was a good shake down for a combined operation in shadowing these movements. IMHO
      American Socialist, Nothing to see here. This is only time they have had a chance to follow it for a long duration to catalog it and it's equipment. The UK Destroyer destroying itself at thirty knots is funny though. The might want to look at that upgrade. We will be doing the same with the Chinese, and the Chinese have been doing the same to us. It just doesn't make the news.
    • avatar
      Where are the Green Peace activists? Thousands of Climate Change scientists, NGOs?
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