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Orekhovo-Zuyevo small missile ship joins Russian Navy (Photo Credit: Sergei Malgavko/TASS)

The crew of the Black Sea Fleet’s small missile ship Orekhovo-Zuyevo held air defense drills in the Mediterranean, the Fleet’s press office reported on Tuesday.

“Under the drills’ scenario, the ship’s air defense teams spotted a group of a notional enemy’s aircraft flying towards the Orekhovo-Zuyevo. The air defense teams of the small missile ship practiced the algorithm of measures to repel the hypothetical enemy’s air attack weapons,” the press office said in a statement.

During the drills, the team of the warship’s combat information center detected and identified simulated targets while the air defense teams destroyed them by electronic launches, the statement says.

The Black Sea Fleet’s missile corvette Orekhovo-Zuyevo has been performing assigned missions within the Russian Navy’s permanent Mediterranean taskforce since April this year.

The Orekhovo-Zuyevo is the seventh Project 21631 ‘Buyan-M’ small missile ship. Project 21631 Buyan-M-class small missile ships feature increased water displacement and are equipped with the latest Kalibr-NK standardized precision missile system designated to strike naval and coastal targets.

Russian Navy’s Mediterranean Squadron

The Soviet Navy’s 5th Mediterranean Squadron served as a prototype for the Russian Navy’s permanent Mediterranean taskforce operating at present. The 5th operational Soviet Squadron dealt with the tasks of naval presence in the Mediterranean theater of operations during the Cold War period. Its main rival was the US Navy’s 6th Fleet. The Soviet Squadron was disbanded on December 31, 1992, a year after the disintegration of the Soviet Union.

In 2013, Russia started to create a new operational Mediterranean taskforce. Russia’s new permanent Squadron is dealing with planned and urgent combat missions arising in the Mediterranean theater of operations, including warding off threats to Russia’s national and military security.

Source: TASS, May 12, 2020