Russia announces naval drills in ‘east Mediterranean’

Russia’s defence ministry on Thursday said it will hold naval drills in the “east Mediterranean” in September and October, as the West frets over a military buildup by Moscow in Syria. The exercises include three warships from Russia’s Black Sea Fleet, including the Saratov landing ship, the Moskva guided missile cruiser and the Smetlivy destroyer, the ministry said in a statement. The drills will involve “40 combat exercises, including rocket and artillery fire at sea and airborne targets,” the statement said.

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