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Russia conducts massive military drills in Kaliningrad exclave


Colton Jones

Aug 17, 2020

Russia is holding a massive military exercise in Kaliningrad, a sensitive exclave of Russian territory sandwiched between Poland and the Baltics.

Kaliningrad is a tiny Russian enclave sitting between Poland and Lithuania, a Russia’s strategic outpost on NATO’s doorstep.

Missile formations of Russia’s Baltic Fleet have held drills in the Kaliningrad Region for eliminating a notional enemy’s subversive groups and stealthily deploying Iskander tactical missile systems, the Fleet’s press office reported on Monday.

The exercise on destruction of the command posts and other objects of the mock enemy started with the crews of mobile-tactical missile complexes “Iskander” of the Baltic Fleet army corp at the ground in the Kaliningrad region.

Currently, the units of the missile formation have already marched to the designated area to perform a combat training task, during which they repelled attacks by mock sabotage and reconnaissance groups and overcame the contaminated area.

In addition, over 20 crews of aircraft and helicopters of the Baltic Fleet’s naval aviation are involved in tactical flight drills in the Kaliningrad Region.

“During scheduled drills, over 20 crews of Su-27, Su-24 and Su-30SM aircraft, Mi-24 and Mi-8 attack and military-transport helicopters and also of shipborne Ka-27 gunships and An-26 military-transport planes of the Baltic Fleet’s naval aviation are accomplishing a set of various assignments,” the press office said in a statement.

During the drills, the crews are launching airborne missiles and rockets of various classes, firing aircraft guns, dropping bombs weighing from 100 kg to 500 kg and practicing maneuvering elements in an aerial battle and target runs under a notional enemy’s jamming, the statement says.

The crews of Su-24 frontline bombers and Su-30SM multirole fighters will drop bombs on a target field and fire rockets against coastal targets. Su-27 fighters will accomplish the assignments of intercepting notional intruders of the airspace over the Kaliningrad Region and conduct electronic launches against the enemy’s cruise missiles and strategic bombers, the press office specified.

Along with the attack and fighter aircraft, the crews of helicopters will practice missions at combat training ranges to search for and track submarines, provide air support for coastal defense troops, airlift and land a tactical airborne assault force, the statement says.

“The naval aviation pilots are accomplishing combat training tasks both in the daytime and at night. Around 50 combat training sorties have been performed. Overall, the exercise involves about 20 aircraft and also over 400 personnel of an air formation of the Baltic Fleet’s naval aviation,” the press office said.

The tactical flight exercise is aimed at improving the pilots’ flying, combat employment and professional skills, it stressed.


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