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Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)

Russia could extend military presence off Somali coast

RIA Novosti


MOSCOW, December 5 (RIA Novosti) - Russia is ready to extend its anti-piracy mission off the coast of Somalia, Russia's envoy to NATO has said.

Russia joined international anti-piracy efforts off the Somali coast in October 2008.

"Probably, aviation could appear, say, naval aviation," Dmitry Rogozin told journalists after a meeting of the Russia-NATO council on Friday.

He added that in 2010 Russia would not take part in the NATO-led Operation Active Endeavor naval antiterrorism exercise in the Mediterranean, designed to prevent the movement of terrorists or weapons of mass destruction, as well as to enhance the security of shipping in general.

A task force consisting of the Admiral Chabanenko destroyer from Russia's Northern Fleet and a support ship arrived in the Gulf of Aden on Monday to resume Russia's anti-piracy mission off the Horn of Africa. The destroyer began escorting commercial ships in the Gulf of Aden on Friday.

The Russian Navy plans to maintain a constant presence off the Horn of Africa, with each fleet dispatching warships on a rotation basis.

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