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Royal Navy monitors surfaced Russian submarine in waters around the UK

HMS Tyne and HMS Mersey watched every movement of the Kilo-class submarine, Krasnodar, after picking up monitoring duties from French light frigate FS Enseigne de vaisseau Jacoubet.

The attack submarine – built in the Soviet Union for the Soviet Navy in the 1980s – has been conducting a surfaced transit from the Eastern Mediterranean, with its ocean-going tug Sergey Balk in support.

Portsmouth-based Tyne, an Offshore Patrol Vessel, picked up the Krasnodar at the south-western end of the English Channel after the French Navy tracked its journey through the Bay of Biscay.

After sailing the Channel, sister ship HMS Mersey took over duties as the Russians headed through the Strait of Dover and into the North Sea on Monday.

Lieutenant Justin Shirtcliff, HMS Tyne’s Operations Officer, said: “Tyne responded in a coordinated effort with allies to shadow the Russian submarine and her escort while transiting the English Channel.

“This routine undertaking is an enduring task for the Royal Navy, in which Tyne and her sister ships of the Royal Navy’s Overseas Patrol Squadron play a key role.”

Lieutenant Commander Will Edwards-Bannon, HMS Mersey’s Commanding Officer, said: “It has been impressive to see, first-hand, the seamless coordination between allied ships and aircraft from various nations involved in this operation.

“I am very proud of the disciplined way in which my ship’s company has responded to the challenge of maintaining our readiness for operations through the challenges of Covid-19 which, along with the support we receive from our families, has enabled Mersey to once again successfully play our part in protecting our nation’s interests.”

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