Russia has started maneuvers in the North Atlantic involving nuclear submarines, reported the Norwegian government-owned broadcasting company NRK, citing Norwegian military intelligence sources. According to the sources, this is the largest military exercise in the North Atlantic since the end of the Cold War.
The intelligence sources cited by NRK report that 10 Russian submarines that were previously stationed at the Kola Peninsula have been involved in the exercise. Of the submarines, eight are nuclear. The exercise, which began last week, is expected to last two months.
Norwegian Armed Forces spokesperson Brynjar Stordal told the AFP news agency that Norway and other NATO member states have been monitoring the Russian fleet’s activity, including from the air. Russian submarines have even been spotted in the Norwegian and Barents seas, and the locations of several submarines are unknown.
The military leadership of the Scandinavian country believes that the Russian submarines are trying to move as far west as possible in the Atlantic Ocean without being detected. Oslo says that Russia’s goal for the maneuver is probably to demonstrate its own defensive capabilities and show that its armed forces can reach the US coast. Moscow also wants to inspect NATO’s ability to detect such operations and respond to them.