Russian warship to join drills with China, South Africa navies

23 January, 2023 | Pragati Singh

russian warship holds drills in norwegian sea World

A Russian cruiser outfitted with hypersonic cruise weapons will participate in drills with the Chinese and South African navy in February.

A Russian cruiser outfitted with hypersonic cruise weapons will participate in drills with the Chinese and South African navy in February, according to Russia’s state-owned TASS news agency,

The news on Monday was the first public reference of the Russian frigate Admiral of the Fleet of the Soviet Union Gorshkov’s participation.

“‘Admiral Gorshkov’ … will go to the logistic support point in Syria’s Tartus, and then take part in joint naval exercises with the Chinese and South African navies,” TASS said in its report, citing an unidentified defence source.

The South African National Defence Force has said the drills will run from February 17-26 near the port cities of Durban and Richards Bay on South Africa’s east coast.

It said on Thursday that the joint exercise aims “to strengthen the already flourishing relations between South Africa, Russia and China”.

The exercise will be the second involving the three South African countries, following a drill in 2019.

The Gorshkov conducted training in the Norwegian Sea earlier this month after President Vladimir Putin dispatched it to the Atlantic Ocean to send a message to the West that Russia would not back down from its involvement in the Ukraine conflict.

Putin has previously declared the ship and its Zircon missiles had “no analogues in the world”.

The Russian president views the weapons as a means of circumventing the US’s more advanced missile defences.

Russia, the United States, and China are racing to create hypersonic weapons, which are considered as a method to gain an advantage over any foe due to their speed and manoeuvrability, which make them difficult to detect.