Russia's Moskva Missile Cruiser Sets Off To Its Naval Base In Ukraine

VLADIVOSTOK, Russia -- The flagship of the Black Sea fleet, the Moskva missile cruiser, has set off from the port of Vladivostok in Russia's Far East to its home port in Ukraine's Sevastopol, a Navy spokesman said on Wednesday.

Russia's Moskva missile cruiser

The Moskva missile cruiser was participating in Russia's Vostok 2010 military drills jointly with the flagship of the Northern Fleet, the Pyotr Veliky nuclear-powered guided-missile cruiser, and the flagship of the Pacific Fleet, the Varyag guided-missile cruiser.

"After a short rest in Vladivostok, the Moskva set off for the Black Sea to its home base in the port of Sevastopol. It will have to pass across the Pacific, Indian and Atlantic oceans," the spokesman said.

Russia's Black Sea Fleet is stationed in Ukraine's port of Sevastopol under a lease agreement. Moscow and Kiev signed earlier in the year a deal extending the lease on the fleet's base in Sevastopol for 25 years after the current lease expires in 2017.

Vostok-2010 exercises in Siberia and the country's Far East started on June 29 and ended on July 8. They involved 20,000 troops, up to 2,500 pieces of military hardware, 70 warplanes and 30 warships.

During the exercises, warships of the three Russian fleets conducted live firing at naval and aerial drones and practiced combat interoperability and repelling simulated attacks by hostile submarines and aircraft.

Russia holds Vostok strategic command-and-staff drills every two years.

Source: RIA Novosti