Russia to Deploy Nuclear Sub in Pacific

      September 09, 2011 12:38

      Russia will deploy the new nuclear submarine Yury Dolgoruky with its Pacific Fleet this year, Russia's state-run ITAR-TASS news agency reported Thursday. The Pacific Fleet is headquartered in Vladivostok.

      ITAR-TASS quoted Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin as telling members of his United Russia Party on Sept. 5 that the submarine is successfully undergoing trials and should be delivered to the Pacific Fleet this year. Russia will cultivate the capacity to modernize its Navy so it can deal with matters ranging from nuclear deterrence to securing maritime interests, he added.

      The nuclear sub was named after Prince Yury Dolgoruky, who founded the Moscow Principality in the 12th century. Some 170 m long, the 24,000 ton Borey-class sub can carry up to 12 up-to-date Bulava submarine-launched ballistic missiles. The Bulava, meaning "mace," is capable of flying 8,000-10,000 km to hit the mainland U.S., carrying six to 10 nuclear warheads.

      During the Cold War, the then Soviet Union built and deployed eight nuclear subs carrying medium- and long-range missiles with a range of about 3,000 km mainly in the North Sea to contain the U.S. and Western Europe.

      There is speculation that Russia is trying to regain the military capabilities of the Soviet Union and deploying its first new nuclear sub in the Pacific to impress the U.S. as well as China, which is rapidly building up its military capacity.

      Russia is going to build up to eight nuclear subs carrying Bulava SLBMs by 2020. It will also deploy other Borey-class subs and Mistral-class assault landing ships imported from France in the Pacific.

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