"It is a very significant event for the navy. It confirms the seriousness of our intentions to renovate the army and navy. It is a great event in the life of the country," Putin said during a video conference with Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu, who is in Severomorsk.
"The submarine Yury Dolgoruky is a serious, powerful weapon that will guarantee security and raise our defense capability," Putin said.
He thanked all those who had been involved in designing, building and testing "this formidable vessel," including the Rubin submarine design bureau and the Sevmash shipyard.
"The Yury Dolgoruky is a nuclear missile carrier of a new generation. Submarines of this class will form the core of the sea component of the strategic forces, a guarantor of the global balance, the security of Russia and its allies," he said.
Russian warships will hold the biggest-ever exercises in the Mediterranean Sea, Russian Defense Minister Gen. of the Army Sergei Shoigu said after a secure videoconference with President Vladimir Putin.
"Russian warships are staying in the Mediterranean in line with their program. They are preparing for the biggest inter-fleet exercises in the country's history. Ships from all fleets will take part in the exercises," the minister said.
The Defense Ministry's press service and information department reported earlier that an inter-fleet force of the Russian Navy comprising ships from the North, Baltic, Black Sea and Pacific Fleets would conduct exercises in the Mediterranean and Black Seas in late January under a plan for the Russian Armed Forces training in 2013.
"The main goal of the exercises is to practice the formation of a combined group of forces outside of the Russian Federation, plan its use and perform joint operations within a Navy group under the common plan," a source at the department told Interfax-AVN.
"A goal of the upcoming exercises is to provide sea practice and skills to personnel of the Navy in the accomplishment of combat training missions in the Black and Mediterranean Seas," he said.
Some 4 trillion rubles will be assigned for acquiring ships for the Russian Navy before 2020, President Vladimir Putin said in a video conference with Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu in Severomorsk.
"Modernization of the Navy is a major priority of our strengthening of the Armed Forces. The state armament program for the period until 2020 assigns more than 4 trillion rubles for the formation of balanced groups of warships and submarines," the president said.
In addition to eight "Borei" strategic submarines, the Russian Navy will receive eight "Yasen" multirole nuclear submarines before 2020, he said.
"We will also build multirole diesel submarines," the president said.
Sevmash will be the main builder, he noted.
Voice of Russia, Interfax
From December 10, Russia is starting to exploit a new military submarine, called “Yuri Dolgoruky”. This is a long-standing project that had been suspended for some time. Then, the old project underwent some modifications. The new submarine has already been successfully tested. It is expected that the submarine will defend Russia’s borders.
This submarine is only a small part of Russia’s large-scale program of rearming itself with military equipment of the newest generation.
“Yuri Dolgoruky” is a nuclear submarine of the “Borey” type, armed with ballistic missiles. It was built in the Russian city of Severodvinsk, one of Russia’s largest centers of producing nuclear military ships.
Another 3 submarines of the “Borey” type, all named after well-known personalities of old Russian history – “Alexander Nevsky”, “Vladimir Monomakh” and “Knyaz Vladimir” – are still being built. Their equipment will be mainly Russian-made, including radio electronic systems of the latest generation and unique noise reduction transducers.
At present, Russian military submarines are, as a rule, equipped with Russian-made ocean-spanning ballistic missiles “Bulava”. The range capability of such a missile is more than 8,000 kms. One submarine of the “Borey” type can be equipped with 16 “Bulava” missiles.
“It can be said that Russia’s nuclear “shield” consists of three parts – aircraft, navy and land-based missile systems,” Russian military expert Igor Korotchenko says. “Until now, from the point of view of new nuclear equipment, the Russian navy lagged behind the air and the land components of this “triad”. Now, the balance between them will be leveled.”
“The equipment of submarines of the “Borey” type allows to examine the situation under water, to trace and attack various kinds of underwater targets,” Igor Korotchenko continues. “The submarines’ systems of weapons control are also of the latest generation.”
The “Borey” submarines are also more advanced from the point of view of safety than their earlier analogues. In particular, they have a break surface camera where the submarine’s entire crew can be placed in case of emergency.
Russia is planning to build 8 such submarines in the next few years. The construction of each will cost Russia about $ 700 mln.
Russian expert in military technologies Ruslan Pukhov says that it is mainly sea-based missiles that make Russia resistant to possible aggression, because land-based missile systems are more vulnerable.
By arming itself with weapons of the latest generation, Russia strengthens its feeling of safety. After all, it is hard to argue with an old saying that goes, “if you want to live in peace, always be ready for a possible war”.