Tags: Russia | Putin | Russian | warships | English Channel

Putin Sends Russian Warships to English Channel

Putin Sends Russian Warships to English Channel

 Russian President Vladimir Putin (Sputnik via AP)

By    |   Saturday, 15 October 2016 09:20 PM

Russian President Vladimir Putin Saturday sent a fleet of warships to the English Channel to test bombs off the British coast, according to news reports.

The move put the Royal Navy on high alert, as vessels would seek to intercept the fleet as it passes within a mile of the British coast en route to Syria, The Sun reports.

The vessels are headed to the Mediterranean Sea and would join Russian naval forces in support of Moscow's bombing campaign in Syria, according to the report.

Putin's action is seen as a bold display of strength amid rising tensions between Russia and the West. The ships are expected to perform drills north of Scotland before sailing off the English coast.

NATO allies, however, are developing plans to intercept the Russian warships, The Telegraph has reported.

"It’s not catching us by surprise," a NATO official said. "We are working up what to do and we are all over it.

"The most likely thing is that they will go through the North Sea, down the Dover Strait and through the Channel.

"They might even stop off the North East coast to fly for a bit," the official told the Telegraph.

A NATO source told the Sun that Moscow's vessels could pass Britain as early as next week.

Alan West, a lord in the House of Commons who is a former Royal Navy senior officer, told the Telegraph that Russia's move risked heightening tensions.

"When people start posturing, things become dangerous," he said. "It all raises tensions and makes things more difficult and that’s not a clever thing to do.

"I find Russia very worrying at the moment," he added. "Their economy is on a war footing."

Putin's action comes days after British Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson called for protests outside the Russian Embassy as he condemned Moscow's bombing campaign.

"A war crime is defined as when you attack something, attack a civilian target in the knowledge that it is a civilian target," Johnson told the Star.

He charged that Moscow could be guilty of war crimes in Syria because an aid convoy was hit by airstrikes.

"Now, Putin’s regime is not only as it were handing [Syrian President Bashar] Assad the revolver," Johnson added. "He is in some instances actually firing the revolver himself.

"The Russians themselves are actually engaged."

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Russian President Vladimir Putin Saturday sent a fleet of warships to the English Channel to test bombs off the British coast, according to news reports.The move put the Royal Navy on high alert, as vessels would seek to intercept the fleet as it passes within a mile of the...
Putin, Russian, warships, English Channel
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2016-20-15
Saturday, 15 October 2016 09:20 PM
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