This is the moment Russia’s most advanced nuclear submarine the ‘Kazan’ – equipped with cruise missiles capable of striking targets on the ground, at sea and underwater – arrives at a Russian naval base near Barents Sea.
The Kazan submarine officially joined the Russian military’s Northern Fleet on 8th May in a naval base in the city of Severodvinsk located in the north of Russia near Barents Sea.
The Kazan was commissioned just after the US navy sailed three destroyers through the Barents Sea, which forms part of the Arctic Ocean, for the first time since the end of the Cold War.
The US Navy said in a statement that the operation was carried out “to assert freedom of navigation and demonstrate seamless integration among allies”.
The 4th generation Kazan nuclear submarine is capable of firing all existing Russian naval-based missiles, it also carries huge 533-mm homing torpedoes.
The nuclear-powered sub is home to 64 personnel and measures 130 metres (430 feet) in length. Despite its size, the vessel reportedly has an extremely low acoustic signature.
Nikolai Yevmenov, a navy admiral who oversaw the ship’s commissioning, said the submarine “has effective strike and electronic weapons that allow it to carry out missions throughout the world’s oceans”.
The Pentagon said: “Russia has gradually strengthened its presence by creating new Arctic units, refurbishing old airfields and infrastructure in the Arctic, and establishing new military bases along its Arctic coastline.”
Barents Sea is considered an important part of the Arctic Ocean due to its natural resources which both Russia and Norway need for their economies and as a trading route.
As ice caps in the region continue to melt due to climate change, the region is set to become increasingly more important to global trade.
NATO is currently planning one of its biggest-ever military exercises involving around 40,000 troops in the Arctic under the codename ‘Cold Response 2022’ in response to a perceived Russian threat in the region.