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Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)

Russian warship arrives in Norway for Northern Eagle 2008 exercise

RIA Novosti

17/07/2008 16:57 MOSCOW, July 17 (RIA Novosti) - A Russian ASW ship, the Severomorsk, arrived on Thursday in Norway's main naval base of Haakonsvern on its way to participate in a joint U.S.-Russian naval exercise in the Barents Sea, a Navy spokesman said.

Northern Eagle 2008 is an annual naval exercise involving U.S. and Russian anti-submarine warfare ships. The ships practice maritime interdiction operations and search and rescue maneuvers. This year the exercise will also include two coast guard ships from the Norwegian navy.

"The Severomorsk ASW ship has accomplished its patrol mission in the Arctic and will participate in the Northern Eagle joint annual exercise with the U.S. navy," Capt. 1st Rank Igor Dygalo said.

The U.S. Navy is represented by the guided-missile frigate USS Elrod, and a P-3 Orion aircraft, originally designed for anti-submarine warfare, but also used for search and rescue missions.

The active stage of the exercise will be held in the Barents Sea on July 21-25.

Later on Thursday, the Marshal Ustinov, a Russian Slava-class missile cruiser, will take over patrols in the area around the Arctic Ocean archipelago of Spitsbergen, which belongs to Norway.

Russia said on July 14 the Russian Navy had resumed a military presence around the Arctic Ocean, including the area of Spitsbergen.

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