Royal Navy tracking Russian warship sailing ‘close to the UK’ in the North Sea

A Russian warship sailing “close to the UK” through the North Sea was being tracked by the Royal Navy on Wednesday.

The Royal Navy said its warship HMS Portland, a Type 23 frigate, is monitoring the Russian guided missile frigate Admiral Gorshkov and accompanying tanker Kama as they sail in international waters near the UK.

But it stressed that escorting warships through “UK territorial waters and the adjacent sea areas is routine activity for the Royal Navy”.

HMS Portland joined the Norwegian Coast Guard vessel Bergen, as the Russian ships moved south through the Norwegian Sea, the Royal Navy said.

It is tracking and reporting on the movements of the Russian ships through the North Sea.

HMS Portland’s commanding officer Commander Ed Moss-Ward said: “Escorting warships in UK territorial waters and the adjacent sea areas is routine activity for the Royal Navy.

“By maintaining a visible and persistent presence, the Royal Navy ensures compliance with maritime law and deters malign activity to protect our nation’s interests.

“Escorting the Russian task group alongside forces from our NATO allies has demonstrated the UK’s commitment to the alliance and to maintaining maritime security.”

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Royal Navy frigate HMS Portland (Matthew Cooper/PA)

HMS Portland departed her home port of Plymouth on Saturday on patrol.

The frigate underwent a major refit in 2021 and is adept at surface warfare and hunting submarines, the Royal Navy added.

It spent much of last year patrolling waters close to the UK, with visits to Norway and Sweden, and working with NATO allies on the alliance’s submarine hunting exercise – Dynamic Mongoose – in the North Atlantic.