Russian fleet deployed for exercises in America’s backyard

Russia has deployed warships and aircraft to the Caribbean Sea for military exercises expected to take place this summer, US officials said.

Washington has been monitoring the fleet and will monitor the exercises that will involve a “handful” of Russian ships and support vessels, the unnamed officials told media outlets such as Reuters and The Associated Press on condition of anonymity.

Russian President Vladimir Putin
Russian President Vladimir Putin looks on during a visit to the Lakhta Center on June 5, 2024 in Saint Petersburg, Russia. Russia has deployed warships and aircraft to the Caribbean Sea for military exercises expected to last…

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They noted that the Biden administration does not currently view the move as concerning, but said the naval exercises are likely a response by Moscow to Washington’s continued support of Ukraine in the war. Russian President Vladimir Putin is also likely trying to demonstrate the might of his navy after Ukraine destroyed some of its most important ships in the conflict, officials said.

The exercises are likely to include port visits in Cuba and Venezuela, and are seen by Washington as part of Russia’s routine naval activities. Moscow deployed ships annually to the Western Hemisphere from 2013 to 2020, a US official said.

“This is about Russia showing that it is still capable of some level of global power projection,” they said.

“As part of Russia’s regular military exercises, we expect Russia to conduct increased naval and air activities near the United States this summer. These actions will culminate in a global Russian naval exercise this fall.”

The official added: “We can expect more of these activities in the future, although we note that these deployments come at a cost to the Russian Navy, which is struggling to maintain readiness and deploy with an aging fleet. ”

Newsweek has contacted the Russian Ministry of Defense by email for comment.

This development comes as relations with Washington reach a new low over Ukraine’s use of American-supplied weapons on Russian soil.

Faced with increasing pressure from Ukraine and its NATO allies, on May 30 the US granted Ukraine permission to use some American-supplied weapons to attack targets in Russia.

The Biden administration said it was acting “with lightning speed” to allow Ukraine to use weapons to attack certain targets in Russia. Kiev may use the weapons on Russian territory bordering northeastern Ukraine for the purpose of defending the Kharkiv region, but the use of long-range missiles such as ATACMS is still banned on Russian territory, a US official said. Newsweek.

Many more of Ukraine’s NATO allies, including France, Poland and Britain, also came out saying they had no objection to the use of equipment they supplied to Kiev in the ongoing war.

In response, Putin warned that he could arm the West’s adversaries with long-range missiles.

“If anyone thinks that it is possible to supply such weapons to a war zone to attack our territory and create problems for us, why don’t we have the right to supply weapons of the same class to regions of the world where strikes will take place? on sensitive facilities of those countries?” Putin told reporters on Wednesday.

“That is, the reaction may be asymmetric. We will think about it,” he added.

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