Kremlin sends nuclear cruiser to Caribbean for first manoeuvres on U.S. doorstep since Cold War

UK Daily Mail
Tuesday, Sept 9, 2008

Russia is planning to deploy an armed nuclear-powered warship on America's doorstep for the first time since the Cold War.

In a move that evokes memories of the Cuban Missile Crisis in 1962, Moscow is dispatching a number of ships to the Caribbean for joint naval manoeuvres with Venezuela.

Russian officials denied the mission was linked to a stand-off in the Black Sea, where the U.S. has sent warships to deliver aid to the former Soviet nation of Georgia.

Russia has criticised the U.S for the deployment of a command ship and two other naval vessels to Georgia's southern border in a show of support for President Mikheil Saakashvili over the conflict with Russia.

Russian President Dmitry Medvedev asked on Saturday how Washington would feel 'if we now dispatched humanitarian assistance to the Caribbean... using our navy'.

But the Kremlin says the Caribbean exercise has been planned for a year.

'We are talking about a planned event not linked with current political circumstances and not in any way connected to events in Georgia,' Russian Foreign Ministry spokesman Andrei Nesterenko told a news briefing yesterday.

The exercises 'will in no way be directed against the interests of a third country', he added.

Full article here

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