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Caribbean Punch: Putin Sending Warships to Biden's Doorstep for Chilling Drills

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Source: MEGA

Vladimir Putin is sending Russian warships and aircraft to the Caribbean for military drills this summer.

Jun. 6 2024, Published 5:00 p.m. ET

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Vladimir Putin is sending Russian warships and aircraft to the Caribbean for military drills this summer in a show of power as tensions rise over Western military support for Ukraine, RadarOnline.com has learned.

"As part of Russia’s regular military exercises, we anticipate that this summer, Russia will conduct heightened naval and air activity near the United States," a senior Biden administration official said, per The Guardian. "These actions will culminate in a global Russian naval exercise this fall."

“We are expecting that Russia will temporarily send combat naval vessels to the Caribbean region and these ships will likely conduct port calls in Cuba and possibly Venezuela. There may also be some aircraft deployments or flights in the region.”

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Source: MEGA

The U.S. has been tracking the "handful" of Russian ships and support vessels and will continue to monitor the situation.

The drills are seen as part of routine naval activity that has likely been planned for some time and "we are not concerned by Russia’s deployments, which pose no direct threat to the United States," the official explained.

“We should expect more of this activity going forward, although we note these deployments incur a cost on the Russian navy, which is struggling to maintain readiness and conduct deployments with an aged fleet,” he added.

The U.S. has been tracking the "handful" of Russian ships and support vessels and will continue to monitor the situation.

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Source: MEGA

Although Ukraine lacks a powerful fleet of its own, its navy has carried out missile and drone attacks on Russia's Black Sea Fleet throughout the war with Russia.

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Russia has sailed ships into the Western Hemisphere every year from 2013 to 2020, but this would be the first coordinated air and sea exercise of its kind since 2019 — and the first since Putin suggested that Moscow could take “asymmetrical steps” elsewhere in the world in response to Biden's decision to allow Ukraine to use American-made weapons to strike inside Russia.

Moscow reportedly intends to use the exercises as a “messaging tactic," the Miami Herald reports. According to the Biden official, “We expect that, as is predictable, the Russians will amp up the information space with this, both to make a point and to unsettle us. We’re not particularly concerned. It’s something that they’ve done before ... This is about Russia showing they are still capable of some level of naval power projection."

Ukrainian military officials said in February that Russia had lost one-third of its Black Sea fleet to Ukrainian missile and drone strikes. Putin's "last cruise missile carrier" in the Black Sea was recently destroyed during a successful operation on the Moscow-occupied Crimean Peninsula.

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