Putin beefs up naval nuclear arsenal, promises more subs

A file photo of Russian President Vladimir Putin in Moscow, Russia on February 21, 2023. (Sputnik/Sergei Savostyanov/Pool via REUTERS)

Putin on Monday attended the flag-raising ceremony for the two nuclear-powered submarines Krasnoyarsk and Imperator Aleksandr III at the Sevmash yard in Severodvinsk.

“With such sailors, with such vessels and with such weapons, Russia will feel safe,” Vladimir Putin wrote in the guest book on the bridge at one of the warships at port in Severodvinsk.

Putin’s visit to the north Russian Arkhangelsk region was not announced and came as a surprise to locals who Monday morning discovered police and security forces at every street corner as the president’s motorcade came to Severodvinsk.

The president went directly to Sevmash, the only shipyard in Russia building nuclear-powered submarines.

“We are consistently equipping the Navy with the most modern equipment and weapons and, let me emphasize, we are increasing serial production. Thus, Imperator Aleksandr III is already the seventh vessel in the series of Borei-class strategic missile carriers, and the cruiser Krasnoyarsk is the fourth vessel in the series of Yasen-class multi-purpose nuclear boats,” Putin said from stage.

More 4th generation nuclear-powered submarines

A transcript of Putin’s speech is posted on Vkontakte by Sevmash.

He promised to keep up Russia’s construction program for more nuclear-powered submarines of the 4th generation.

“Work to increase Russia’s naval power will certainly continue. In the coming years, as part of the state armament program, three more Borei-A class strategic missile carriers should be launched from the  legendary Sevmash and transferred to the Navy.”

The Borei-A class subs can each carry 16 Bulava ballistic missiles and form the naval leg of Russia’s nuclear deterrence.

Five more of the multipurpose Yasen-M class subs are currently under construction at the north Russian yard, including the Arkhangelsk which was put on water in late November this year.

Three additional subs of the class will follow, bringing the total number up to 12, six for the Northern Fleet and six for the Pacific Fleet.

Armed forces benefit in 2024 budget 

The Krasnoyarsk will, like the Imperator Aleksandr III, sail for the Pacific Fleet.

Vladimir Putin recently approved the country’s 2024 budget with a record high portion going to the armed forces. Defense and security structures will next year reach about 40% of the total expenditure.

No details are provided on the costs of each new nuclear submarine now being rolled out.

Related stories from around the North: 

Canada: U.S. report claims Trudeau told NATO Canada will never meet military spending target, CBC News

Finland: With northern focus, Finland applies EU funding to improve military mobility, The Independent Barents Observer

Norway: British & Norwegian F-35s scrambled in North to intercept Russian military plane, The Independent Barents Observer

United States: First U.S. deep water port for the Arctic to host cruise ships, military, The Associated Press

Thomas Nilsen, The Independent Barents Observer

For more news from the Barents region visit The Independent Barents Observer.

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