Putin's Russian assault flotilla heads to English Channel – Royal Navy forced to intervene

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Putin's Russian assault flotilla heads to English Channel – Royal Navy forced to intervene

According to AIS data from marinetraffic.com, five Ropucha-class landing ships and one Ivan Gren-class landing ship have been dispatched from Russi

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According to AIS data from marinetraffic.com, five Ropucha-class landing ships and one Ivan Gren-class landing ship have been dispatched from Russia’s Baltic fleet. It is believed the ships are en route towards the English Channel.

Marineschepen reported the “supervision was then taken over by Belgian and British naval vessels”.

Three Ropucha-class ships were spotted moving through the Straits of Denmark on Monday.

On Tuesday, an additional two Ropucha-class ships and the Ivan Gren-class ship also made the transit, according to UK Defence Journal.

According to Armchair Admiral, the French Navy is also shadowing Russian vessels alongside the Royal Navy’s HMS Dragon.

This comes after Defence Secretary Ben Wallace announced the UK will supply defensive weapon systems to Ukraine as the war of words between Moscow and Kiev escalates.

Tensions between Moscow and Kiev reached boiling point last year after Russia amassed more troops near the contested borders.

Since 2014, more than 14,000 people have been killed in the conflict in eastern Ukraine.

In September, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy warned an all-out war with Russia could be a “possibility”.

READ MORE: UK told to enter ‘crisis mode’ as Ukraine and Russia tensions mount

“Ukraine has every right to defend its borders and this new package of aid further enhances its ability to do so.

“Let me be clear: this support is for short-range and clearly defensive weapon capabilities; they are not strategic weapons and pose no threat to Russia; they are to use in self-defence.”

The Defence Secretary said any invasion by Russia would be viewed as an “occupation”.

He added: “I fear it could lead to a huge loss of life on all sides.

“The current difficult relationship with the Kremlin is not the one we wish it to have with the United Kingdom, it does not have to be this way.”

He went on to stress things in common between the two countries.

Mr Wallace earlier invited his Russian counterpart, Sergey Shoygu, to visit London “in the next few weeks”.

He said: “We’re ready to discuss issues related to mutual security concerns and engage constructively in good faith.”

Mr Wallace continued: “We wish to be friends with the Russian people as we have been for hundreds of years.

“And there is a world in which we can establish a mutually beneficial relationship with Russia.

“I still remain hopeful that diplomacy will prevail.

“It is President Putin’s choice whether to choose diplomacy and dialogue or conflict and the consequences.”



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