Ukrainian, NATO ships start Sea Breeze 2010 drills in Black Sea.
Fifteen Ukrainian, U.S. and Turkish warships sailed out of Ukraine's Black Sea port of Odessa on Sunday to begin the active phase of the Sea Breeze 2010 exercises, the Ukrainian UNIAN news agency reported.
The military drills, focused on the planning and conduct of international anti-piracy operations, began in southern Ukraine on July 12 and will run until Friday.
The multinational headquarters is staffed by Ukrainian, U.S., Georgian and Moldovan officers and representatives of Azerbaijan, Belgium, Germany, Greece, Denmark, Moldova, Poland, Sweden and Austria are also at the exercises.
A statement by the headquarters said two Be-12 and one An-26 aircraft and an Mi-14 helicopter from the Ukrainian Navy's aviation arm would also take part in Sunday's drills, carrying out search, rescue and evacuation missions and providing air support for the ships.
The Sea Breeze exercises have been running since 1997 with the participation of military units from NATO and its Partnership for Peace countries, which include Ukraine and Georgia.
In previous years the exercises drew protests by political groups, including the Ukrainian Communist Party and the Progressive Socialist Party of Ukraine, and residents of Crimea, Odessa and other southern regions opposed to closer Ukrainian ties with NATO.
The exercises did not take place in 2006 or 2009, in the latter case when Ukraine's parliament refused to grant permission for the deployment of foreign troops in the country.
This year, however, the preparations went smoothly and the Communists, part of the coalition government with the Party of Regions of Ukraine's new pro-Russian president, Viktor Yanukovych, vowed they would not hinder the exercises.
The Progressive Socialist Party attempted to protest against the drills on Kiev's Independence Square on July 9, but police broke up the rally, with several activists detained but quickly released.
Foreign Ministry: Two Ukrainians still held by Somali pirates.
KYIV, August 3 /UKRINFORM/. Two Ukrainian citizens are still being held by Somali pirates - one on the Eleni P and another on the Marida Marguerite, Ukrainian Deputy Foreign Minister Ruslan Demchak said, UKRINFORM reported.
He recalled that 18 Ukrainians had been held hostage by Somali pirates onboard six vessels as of early 2010.
The Ukrainian Foreign Ministry, along with other government agencies and the companies operating the vessels, took all measures to guarantee the safety of Ukrainians onboard ships hijacked by pirates, providing the vessels with necessary food, rendering moral support to the families of sailors, releasing vessels and ensuring the return of sailors to Ukraine.
The Foreign Ministry assured that the ministry would continue to take all of the necessary measures for a speedy release of the captured sailors.
The Bulgarian Naval Forces mark over the weekend the 131-year anniversary of their establishment in the presence of local and State officials and numerous events in the Black Sea cities of Varna and Burgas.
Bulgaria’s President, Georgi Parvanov, is attending Saturday the concert in Varna dedicated to commemoration while Defense Minister, Anyu Angelov, will bestow awards to navy officers at the same event.
In Burgas, the frigate “Verni” (Faithful), sailed to the civil port and was open for visits on Saturday. It is the first one in Bulgaria to pass NATO requirements and receive a NATO standards certificate.
The celebrations will continue in Varna Sunday with the graduation of officers from Varna’s Naval Academy and “Verni” sailing to the city to be visited by the Varna public.
Post by TsarSamuil on Aug 12, 2010 17:10:13 GMT -5
Russia builds up sea border patrols around Abkhazia.
The fifth Russian Mangust class patrol boat has arrived in Abkhazia to help the former Georgian republic guard its maritime border in the Black Sea, a source in the local administration said on Thursday.
Under mutual assistance treaties signed last November following Russia's recognition of Abkhazia and South Ossetia as independent states, Moscow pledged to help both republics protect their borders, and the signatories granted each other the right to set up military bases in their respective territories.
A Russian coast guard division, based at the Black Sea port of Ochamchira in Abkhazia, is expected to have up to 10 Mangust and Sobol class vessels in the future to patrol 215 kilometers (about 133 miles) of the Abkhazian maritime border.
The 19-meter Project 12150 Mangust patrol boat, with a maximum speed of 53 Kts, is equipped with a 14.7-mm machine gun. The 28-meter Project 12200 Sobol patrol boat is equipped with a machine gun and a gun mount, and has a maximum speed of 50 Kts.
The head of the Russian Federal Security Service's coast guard department, Col. Gen. Viktor Trufanov, has said the patrol boats will seize Georgian ships if they illegally enter Abkhaz waters.
Georgia considers Abkhazia and its waters part of Georgian territory, and has declared any unauthorized maritime shipments of goods to be illegal. It has already seized a number of cargo vessels heading to Abkhazia.
Post by TsarSamuil on Aug 12, 2010 17:12:10 GMT -5
Russian admiral calls for deployment of torpedoes mothballed after Kursk disaster.
A unique torpedo that was withdrawn from use after the Kursk submarine tragedy should be returned to the Russian Navy, a former North Fleet commander said on Thursday.
The Kursk nuclear-propelled submarine sank in the Barents Sea on August 12, 2000, following an onboard torpedo explosion, killing all 118 crewmembers. Then Navy chief Adm. Vladimir Kuroyedov banned the use of the Kit (series 65-76) 650-mm torpedoes on all Russian submarines after the incident.
"These torpedoes have unique specifications and are the fastest and most powerful torpedoes in the world," Adm. Oleg Yerofeyev said in an interview with RIA Novosti. "They must be returned to the Navy."
He said the only problem with the torpedoes was that they leak gas.
"Their construction is such that these torpedoes will always leak gas. This does not happen because of poor insulation, the process simply needs to be controlled," Yerofeyev said, adding that a special gauging instrument was needed to control the leak.
Navy Commander Adm. Vladimir Vysotsky earlier said the Kit torpedoes had been placed in reserve at depots and that there were no plans to dismantle them.
The Kit torpedo has a mass of 5 tons, a length of 11 meters, a speed of over 50 knots and a range of 50 kilometers. It uses hydrogen peroxide as fuel and can carry a nuclear warhead.
French warships for Russia to be armed with Ka-52 helicopters.
Mistral-class helicopter carriers, which Russia plans to buy from France, will be armed with Russian Ka-52 Alligator helicopters, Air Force Commander Colonel General Alexander Zelin told the Ekho Moskvy FM station on Saturday.
He emphasized that the Ka-52 Alligator helicopters are very advanced and are equal to best foreign models.
The Ka-52 is armed with 30-mm cannon, Vikhr (Whirlwind) laser guided missiles, rockets, including S-24s, as well as bombs.
The Ka-52 is a modification of the basic Ka-50 Hokum model. The development of the Ka-52 started in 1994 in Russia, but its serial production began only in 2008.
The helicopter is also equipped with two radars, one for ground and one for aerial targets and a Samshite nighttime-daytime thermal sighting system.
Russia is negotiating the purchase of at least one French-built Mistral-class amphibious assault ship and plans to build three more vessels of the same class in partnership with the French naval shipbuilder DCNS.
A Mistral-class ship is capable of transporting and deploying 16 helicopters, four landing barges, up to 70 armored vehicles including 13 battle tanks, and 450 personnel.
The Russian military has said it plans to use Mistral ships in its Northern and Pacific fleets.
Many Russian military and industry experts have questioned the financial and military sense of the purchase, and some believe that Russia simply wants to gain access to advanced naval technology that could be used in the future in potential conflicts with NATO and its allies.
In April, the head of the Federal Service for Military and Technical Cooperation, Mikhail Dmitriev, said the Mistral deal would be concluded by the end of the year.
Somali Pirates Set Free 15 Bulgarian Sailors from MV Panega Ship.
Novinite.com Diplomacy | September 9, 2010, Thursday
The 15-member crew of the Bulgarian ship MV Panega have been released by the Somali pirates who had hijacked the vessel and are in good health.
The news was broken Thursday afternoon by Bulgarian Prime Minister Boyko Borisov during the opening of a new children’s camp in the Kamchiya resort near Varna, and was immediately confirmed by the Navigation Maritime Bulgare (NAVIBULGAR) company, the Bulgarian owner and operator of the vessel.
On May 11, 2010, the MV Panega became the first ever Bulgaria-flagged ship to be hijacked by Somali pirates in the Gulf of Aden.
The Somali hijackers vacated the vessel at 11 am local time on Thursday, September 9, 2010, and the 15-member all Bulgarian crew took over, NAVIBULGAR said in a statement.
According to them, all Bulgarian sailors are sound and in good health.
“After regular contacts with the captain and after we just spoke to him, Navigation Maritime Bulgare confirms that the crew is fine as much as they can be after such an ordeal. One of the members of the crew had been wounded during the hijacking of the vessel but has recovered since then. The ship is in a good condition and is on its way to a safe port. According to our information, during the duration of the kidnapping, the Somali pirates behaved in a decent and bearable way,” said the Navigation Maritime Bulgare statement.
The only information about how the Bulgarian sailors were released was provided by Prime Minister Boyko Borisov. He said the release was made possible through the actions of the Bulgarian government and the ship owner Navigation Maritime Bulgare.
Borisov did not mention any specific conditions, including anything on the ransom that might have been paid to the Somali pirates in order to release MV Panega and its crew.
After Bulgaria’s Foreign Minister Nikolay Mladenov made it clear that the MV Panega is currently being taken by a tugboat to a safe port in Oman where the crew will undergo initial medical exams and treatment, the PM did say that a military transport airplane will be sent to Oman to bring home the Bulgarian sailors on September 15, 2010.
“The management of Navigation Maritime Bulgare appreciates the spirit and will power demonstrated by the MV Panega crew during the harsh experience. We believe that the kidnapping period was extremely hard, and understand the momentary discouragement of the sailors’ relatives, and would like to thank everybody for their courage and support. We thank everybody who participated in the efforts to release the sailors. The management of Navigation Maritime Bulgare would like to extend special thanks for the help in carrying out successful negotiations to Prime Minister Boyko Borisov and the Foreign Ministry led by Minister Nikolay Mladenov.
“We are extremely happy the crew are safe. Our priority now is to provide them and their relatives with support,” said Kiril Domuschiev, Chair of the Supervisory Board of NAVIBULGAR.
The company is not going to provide details about the negotiations with the Somali pirates that led to the release of the MV Panega.
“We believe that any discussions and comments on this issue will be irresponsible, and could threaten the lives of sailors that are still in captivity or may be kidnapped in the future. The management of Navigation Maritime Bulgare believes and hopes that the Bulgarian and international media will be understanding and respectful of this view,” declared the company statement.
The MV Panega, the first ever Bulgaria-flagged ship to be hijacked by Somali pirates, was traveling empty as it was en route to India to be sold for scrap.
Upon its hijacking The Director of Bulgaria’s State Agency “Sea Administration”, Sergey Tsarnaliyski, said the Bulgarian authorities hoped that the Somali pirates would release the MV Panega as soon as they realize that the ship carries nothing of any value for which they can demand a high ransom.
The MV Panega was hijacked in the Gulf of Aden by Somali pirates at about 7:30 pm Eastern European Time on May 11, 2010, even though it was sailing as part of an internationally guarded convoy, EU Navfor Somalia announced.
The Bulgarian ship was hijacked approximately 100 nautical miles east of Aden (Yemen), it was en route from the Red Sea to India when it was attacked by pirates.
MV Panega with a dead weight of 5,848 tonnes, has a crew of 15, all Bulgarian. All 15 Bulgarian sailors are believed to have been captured by the Somali pirates.
The Panega (built 1986, 5,848 dwt) is a single-skin hulled product tanker operated by Navigation Maritime Bulgare Ltd (NAVIBULGAR), formerly, the Bulgarian state shipping operator privatized in 2008.
Bulgaria’s Ministries of Foreign Affairs, Transport, and Defense immediately formed an inter-institutional working group to tackle the situation.
The MV Panega was sailing within a guarded convoy in the internationally recommended transit corridor in the Gulf of Aden. In fact, it was only 7 nautical miles away from an EU naval vessel but was still attacked by Somali pirates. Because of the bad visibility and the unfavorable weather conditions, the attackers were not noticed by EU Navfor ship.
The MV Panega was insured against piracy, and all ransom negotiations will be handled and carried out by the insurance company, officials said in May.
The MV Panega is the fourth ship with Bulgarian sailors on board to be hijacked by the Somali pirates. In the first half of 2010, a total of 13 Bulgarian sailors from the crews of the St. James Park and the Asian Glory ships were kept in captivity for several months.
The UK-owned ships St. James Park and Asian Glory were hijacked on December 29, 2009, and January 1, 2010.
The first case of Somali kidnapped Bulgarian sailors was in April 2009 with the hijacking of the Malaspina Castle, which was released for a USD 900 000 ransom in about two months. The ship's 24-member crew had 16 Bulgarians.
Post by TsarSamuil on Sept 22, 2010 15:44:25 GMT -5
The Soviet Fleet's white elephant: The Dmitry Donskoy turns thirty.
Ria Novosti ^ | 21/09/2010 | Ilya Kramnik
On September 23 1980, a cutting edge Soviet nuclear ballistic missile submarine set out from the Severodvinsk shipyards. The lead vessel of the Soviet third generation Project 941 Akula class (NATO reporting name Typhoon) of ballistic missile submarines, better known to readers by its nickname, the Dmitry Donskoy, was unique in many ways. It was designed as the world's largest submarine, and its displacement of nearly 50,000 metric tons put it in the same class as battleships and aircraft carriers, the largest warships ever.
This Dmitry Donskoy and her five sister submarines were unique to be sure, but they were also bona fide white elephants - a common name for vessels that are more trouble than they're worth.
Offspring of the arms race
The new missile carrier was designed amid yet another escalation of the arms race. Work began in 1972, when the United States announced the creation of its next-generation Ohio class submarines, equipped with Trident I C4 missiles and launching systems.
The Soviet missile carrier was expected to outmatch the new U.S. submarine in all key features. However, this was easier said than done. The missile was the main problem. The Soviet Navy, which already had experience with liquid fuel ballistic missiles, insisted that the new missile had to be powered by solid fuel like American missiles launched from submarines, as they were easier to make and safer to store and use.
However, building the new missile proved challenging for the Soviets, who lagged far behind the United States in solid fuel technology. The new Soviet missile, R-39, was much larger than the Trident I and three times as heavy, 90 tons against 32.3 tons.
That was the first step on the path to building the world's largest ballistic missile submarine. The second step was made after a study was made of the vessel's stationing and service role. The Rubin design bureau, which designed the submarine, was asked to increase its buoyancy to achieve minimal draft, so that the new submarine could use the existing piers and docks; additional buoyancy would also help it operate better in ice-covered waters.
The lead ship vessel was laid on March 16, 1976 and completed in a very short period of time, considering its size. However, its weapons, the R-39 missiles were not ready by its launch in September 1980 or even by its commissioning date in December 1981.
Testing of the R-39 began in 1977, and work was progressing unusually slowly. Half of the 17 launches from a submerged test stand or a submarine failed. As a result, the D-19 system and its new missiles were not ready until 1984, when it was finally incorporated into the Navy.
Strengths and weaknesses
A total of six ballistic missile submarines were laid between 1976 and 1985 under the new project. They were commissioned from 1981 through 1989. A seventh submarine was planned but never built. The project's strengths and weaknesses were apparent by that time. The submarine's high endurance was certainly an advantage, and so was the comfort afforded to the crew by the vessel's massive size.
However, its size was also a weakness. First of all, propelling the massive vessel required a very powerful engine, which made the submarine noisier. The project also exacted a heavy toll on the Soviet economy. These unique submarines, unmatched in the world, were also several times more expensive than the 667BDRM Delfin submarines built in the early 1980s. While they had less fire power - 16 missiles and 64 warheads against 20 and 200 - the Delfins proved more economically efficient per warhead delivery.
The short-lived giants
Akula submarines did not have a long career. This entire class submarines were decommissioned in 1995-2005 after the service lives of their R-39 missiles expired and could not be extended. The submarines could have been given a new lease on life if they had been equipped with newer weapons. However, the new missile, the R-39UTTH Bark (NATO reporting name SS-N-28), was designed for the Project 935 submarines and later for the Project 955 fourth-generation submarines, the Borei.
The Russian Navy lacked the funds to modernize the Akulas, and it focused on preserving active 667BDRM and 667BDR submarines instead.
The Bark project was abandoned soon after and replaced by the Bulava, a far smaller and lighter missile.
However, the lead vessel of Project 941, named Dmitry Donskoy after the Grand Duke of Moscow (1359-1389), was upgraded to launch Bulava missiles, and all 12 Bulava launches were made from that submarine. In addition to the Dmitry Donskoy, two more submarines are kept as back up in Severodvinsk, TK-17 Arkhangelsk and TK-20 Severstal. These can also be upgraded to launch Bulavas, if their final tests are successful.
However, many experts believe this project is inefficient. The old drawbacks of the Akula class have not been addressed, so it would be wiser to modernize the Delfins, which have been showing better results throughout. The Delfins are equipped with new liquid-fuel R-29RM Sineva missiles, considered the top in their class.
Akulas are not likely to be retooled as transport submarines for year-round use on the Northern Sea Route either, as there is no clear economic rationale for such a project.
At any rate, Akulas will be remembered as unique vessels born of the technological and operational limitations of the time. The attempt to overcome these limitations resulted in exorbitant costs and a fleet of white elephants.
Post by TsarSamuil on Oct 18, 2010 16:42:27 GMT -5
Russia plans to re-activate [Vietnamese] Phan Rang Base.
Ruvr.Ru Alexander Redchenko Oct 8, 2010 15:03 Moscow Time
The Russian Navy is planning to reopen the naval base in the Phan Rang in Vietnam. The Russian naval command in Moscow said as much, specifying that it had completed the work on the documents, which provide convincing arguments for the restoration of the base for Russian warships in the Asia-Pacific Region.
Thanks to its location, the Phan Rang Bay in the South China Sea is regarded as one of the best deep-water seaports in the world. During the Vietnam War Phan Rang was located in South Vietnam and was a big support base of the USA.
In 1979 Moscow and Hanoi signed an agreement on the use of the Phan Rang Sea Port as a support facility by the Soviet Navy for a period of 25 years. Later a big Soviet military base for the navy, air force, marines, radar and some other military facilities, was set up there. Phan Rang served as an effective counterbalance to the U.S. bases in the Philippines, in South Korea and in Japan, but in 2001 Moscow decided to close down the Phan Rang Base. This was done for a number of reasons, mainly economic in character.
However, the majority of the top Russian military commanders were against the closure of the Phan Rang Air Base. The circumstances are gradually changing though. The world has started speaking about Russia’s return to the World’s Oceans. Today’s long cruises of warships, the resumption of the Russian strategic aviation flights over the World’s Oceans and the international situation, characterized by the intensification of sea terrorism confirm the necessity for Russia to have naval and air bases abroad. The former chief of staff, the Russian Navy, Admiral Mikhail Abramov says:
"The issue concerning the fight against piracy is crying for solution. The Russian Navy is actively involved in this. In view of this, some legal problems, concerning the basing of the Russian warships abroad, their systematic cruises to the high seas, and also the forms and methods of using force of arms by the Russian Navy emerge. All these issues are being carefully studied at the moment."
Taking into account Russia’s geographic situation, as well as its economic, political and military interests on the high seas, we can say that Russia is a great sea power. This is an objective reality the world community can’t ignore. That is why Russia should maintain its fleet properly, as was the will of Emperor Peter the Great of Russia.
Vietnam seeks Russian help to modernize naval base.
Vietnam will invite Russian experts to help modernize the country's Cam Ranh naval base, Defense Minister Phung Quang Thanh said on Tuesday.
"We are planning to turn the Cam Ranh Bay into a logistical support facility where both warships and civilian ships, including foreign ones, can be given minor to medium repair work," Thanh told the Tuoi tre daily.
Vietnam is currently is talks with Russia on project documentation, he said, adding that the scale of construction and the amount of investment in the modernization project had yet to be defined.
The minister said the port may also have potential for servicing aircraft carriers.
"So far we are unable to perform maintenance and repairs on aircraft carriers, but we do not rule out that they will be allowed to call in at the port in the future," Thanh said.
Foreign warships will be allowed access to Cam Ranh in accordance with generally accepted international practice, which will "significantly augment the state treasury," he said.
Cam Ranh was the main U.S. Air Force base during the Vietnam War. In 1979 the Soviet Union leased the base for 25 years, turning it into the state's largest naval base abroad. Russia gave up the lease in 2002 after Vietnam raised the rent on the base.
White Cossack: How are you, Nikolov? I heard it's a hot summer in Sweden this year. Do you enjoy it? Regards, Yaroslav
Jul 20, 2018 5:51:43 GMT -5
TsarSamuil: Very very hot...sometimes around 31-35...and it has been going on since month of May, everything is scorched yellow and dry, things are dying or dead, this is abnormal summer..must be global warming, usually have rainy dull summers, this feel like south eu
Jul 30, 2018 10:49:17 GMT -5
TsarSamuil: large forest fires, not where I live, but have country-wide BBQ ban..which I find ridiculous...not to enjoy this warm summer? pffft..
Jul 30, 2018 10:50:42 GMT -5
White Cossack: You enjoy it, huh.
Jul 30, 2018 12:41:41 GMT -5
TsarSamuil: Bbq is basic slavic right
Aug 3, 2018 10:18:31 GMT -5
Proto-Orchid: @ussrstrong: I blame general low activity on social medias, all the people sit there today
Oct 10, 2018 12:53:50 GMT -5
reznik: @proto-Orchid: very true. What's worse, is that the system is designed specifically to keep those people dormant in their echo chambers. Nothing new to learn for them there, just stupid cat videos and such. Sad.
Oct 14, 2018 5:48:26 GMT -5
Proto-Orchid: Its the substitute for going out, meeting and spending your time with friends in real life. Its just part of the story. When I was younger I remember people were meeting to play team sports, but today you see completely autistic people jogging with iPhone.
Oct 14, 2018 18:18:38 GMT -5
Proto-Orchid: Then they come back home, put pictures on Instagram or Facebook to show off how they spent their time jogging, and as mental satisfaction they get few likes or hearts, or whatever social medias have today, which is a measure of how good their life is. Sick
Oct 14, 2018 18:21:43 GMT -5
Pan-Slavic Patriot: Sto Latz! Today marks 100 years of Polska! May there be 100 more! Wish I could have gone to the Independence March to celebrate this year, of all years. Theres always the next one to look forward to...
Nov 11, 2018 6:56:57 GMT -5
prawiomir: Hello. : )
Nov 25, 2018 17:19:11 GMT -5
Pan-Slavic Patriot: The latest flare up in the Ukraine-Russia conflict is painful to watch. Two brothers pit against one-another by foriegn elites, for what? Money and power... Sad.
Nov 30, 2018 3:17:07 GMT -5
TsarSamuil: Seems like its loosing momentum? lets hope...
Dec 29, 2018 9:15:04 GMT -5
Farm needs Production with alu: To Direktor: Herr Wasilij Rosinov Adresse: Kasachstan, 110 006 Kostanay, ul. Schewchenko, 64 Tel: +7 (3142) 54 09 89 Fax: +7 (3142) 54 65 53 Email: email@example.com Web: www.ivolga.kz
To Ms. Yuliya Ryaskina Please place this email to concerning Managemen
Feb 27, 2019 23:01:32 GMT -5
Marcinko: Looking for contacts to research Marcinko name in Slovakia.
Jun 3, 2019 0:37:57 GMT -5
White Cossack: Nikolov, my dear.. What's up
Jul 28, 2019 9:08:27 GMT -5
TsarSamuil: Bought a 3rd book shelf, for some reason I'm crazy about buying lots of books..
Aug 12, 2019 15:49:41 GMT -5
kooratz: I don't shout , it's considered rude, here in the US. I do shout a few things though, for one, ILLEGAL IMMIGRATION, IS RUINING OUR NATION!
Sept 13, 2019 20:32:33 GMT -5