The Russian Northern Fleet With Frequent Exercises in the Barents Sea and the White Sea

The Russian Northern Fleet's destroyer Admiral Ushakov in the Barents Sea. (Photo: the Russian Ministry of Defense)

This week, the Russian Northern Fleet's destroyer Admiral Ushakov practices live-fire shooting in the Barents Sea – and the anti-submarine ship Onega practices submarine hunting in the White Sea. With this, the fleet has carried out 11 smaller exercises so far in May.

Les denne artikkelen på norsk her.

At the beginning of May, the Norwegian Armed Forces announced that it expects major allied and Russian naval activity in Norway's immediate areas in the time coming – partly in light of hectic allied exercising, such as the marine exercise Formidable Shield.

The exercise activity of the Russian Northern Fleet's marine vessels can also be said to be hectic. So far this month, the Russian Ministry of Defense has announced 11 smaller exercises in the sea areas in the north:

  • 18th of May (a): The smaller anti-submarine ship Onega practices submarine hunting and attacking in the White Sea for several days. A submarine, in turn, resists and practices torpedo attacks against the ship. 
  • 18th of May (b): Attack aircraft of the type Su-25UTG carried out practice flights in Arctic airspace. 
  • 16th of May (a): The smaller anti-submarine ship Naryan-Mar trained over the course of a few days on submarine hunting and attacking using depth charges in the White Sea. A submarine practiced torpedo attacks against the ship.
  • 16th of May (b): Fighter aircraft of the type Su-33 and Su-30, as well as Su-25UTG, practiced combat maneuvers in the airspace above the Kola Peninsula.
  • 15th of May: The destroyer Admiral Ushakov is carrying out live-fire training in the Barents Sea this week, with artillery firing at both coastal and naval targets. 
  • 12th of May: The aforementioned Naryan-Mar practiced air defense against simulated attacks from Su-24 bombers and reconnaissance aircraft in the White Sea.
  • 11th of May: The aforementioned Onega trained in the White Sea for submarine hunting, the use of anti-submarine weapons, and air defense against simulated attacks from Iljusjin Il-38 maritime patrol and anti-submarine aircraft.
  • 10th of May: The minesweeper vessels Yadrin and Solovetsky Yunga practiced clearing mines in the Barents Sea, placed by the smaller anti-submarine ship Brest. The two former also practiced artillery shooting against imitated floating mines, as well as cooperation in the Russian coastal zone.
  • 4th of May: The aforementioned Narjan-Mar and Onega practiced artillery shooting against sea, land, and air targets, partly simulated by an Iljusjin Il-38 aircraft.
  • 3rd of May: The previously mentioned Yadrin and Solovetsky Yunga practiced search, detection, and destruction of mines in the Barents Sea.
  • 2nd of May: The major landing ship Ivan Gren practiced artillery shooting in the Barents Sea against sea, land, and air targets.

In April, the Northern Fleet also carried out several exercises with naval and air forces. At the end of the same month, a group of Russian strategic bombers, fighters, and tankers were also identified in international airspace off the Finnmark coast in Northern Norway.

Also read

This article was originally published in Norwegian and has been translated by Birgitte Annie Molid Martinussen.