Russian forces in the Mediterranean - Wk18/2023
Task Force Composition
Further reduction of the task force was observed with the departure of the intelligence collection vessel Yuri Ivanov. The departure of this vessels will result in less Russian coverage of NATO exercises within the Mediterranean.
As for the remainder of the task force, little to no activity was reported at the beginning of the week though a Improved Kilo class submarine Krasnodar and the minehunter Vladimir Emelyanov were absent from the port of Tartus. Both vessels could have been deployed in the coastal zone which would explain the presence of an Italian P-8A Poseidon maritime patrol aircraft observing the area around Latakia.
Satellite imagery of the port of Latakia showed several Russian warships being moored inside the harbor. These vessels were identified as the frigate Admiral Gorshkov, the corvette Orekhovo-Zuyeve and the fleet oiler Kola .
A P-8A Poseidon maritime patrol aircraft of the Italian Navy departed Sigonella airbase and conducted a patrol along the shorelines near Latakia . The deployment the P-8A suggests Russian maritime activity in this area.
Intelligence collection vessel Yuri Ivanov departed the Mediterranean. She was visually observed passing through the Strait of Gibraltar heading west into the Atlantic Ocean during the afternoon .