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Russia builds Naval Base in Kaspiisk for its Caspian Flotilla

Naval Forces News - Russia
Russia builds Naval Base in Kaspiisk for its Caspian Flotilla
The Russian Defense Ministry began the construction of a naval base in the Caspian Sea. It will accommodate all warships with guided missiles of the flotilla and ensure their rapid deployment for high-precision weapons strikes. After the construction is completed the facility will be more advanced than those available in the North, the Baltic and Black Seas. Experts said the new base will be an important element of the Russian military-political strategy in the Caspian region and the Middle East, the Izvestia daily reported.
Project 11661K Gepard-class Dagestan frigate launching Kalibr-NK in early October 2015Project 11661K Gepard-class Dagestan frigate launching Kalibr-NK in early October 2015
The Defense Ministry told the newspaper it plans to complete the construction of the military port in Kaspiisk (Republic of Dagestan) by 2020. The new facility will accommodate major forces of surface warships armed with high-precision weapons and will become the main naval base in the Caspian Sea.

The construction site used to have a small military township for marine units.

The project includes the construction of a seaport, ammunition dumps, a hospital and barracks for the servicemen and housing for officers. Responsible officials for the buildup have been appointed, fieldwork conducted, the state of available infrastructure analyzed and necessary facilities determined.

The first stage of the project (to be completed by 2019) will focus on the creation of berthing places for warships. It is planned to deepen the seabed, build moorings and the necessary ground infrastructure.
The military stress the task comprises a set of events which will produce fully-fledged and weather-protected port infrastructure in Kaspiisk.

Before the collapse of the USSR the naval base in Baku in Azerbaijan was the most advanced in the country. Since the 1990s the Caspian flotilla has been using the ports of Astrakhan and Makhachkala. The former accommodates artillery warships and minesweepers and the latter keeps the main strike force - the 106th brigade of warships with missile armaments.
Location of Kaspiysk
During the Syrian campaign the flotilla demonstrated it is an instrument of long-range engagement outside the Caspian region due to the Kalibr cruise missiles on corvettes (small missile boats) of project 21631. However better infrastructure is necessary to properly play the trump card.

Expert Sergei Mikheyev explained enhanced Russian military capabilities in the region by several economic and geopolitical reasons. "The region is of growing interest for third countries. It is rich in oil and gas. Besides, an alternative corridor from Central Asia to the West via post-Soviet Transcaucasia can go through it. The idea is promoted by the Americans and the Europeans but Russia and Iran are against it," he said.

Mikheyev also said the Caspian Sea is a valuable asset for the Russian military as it is located close to the Middle East and directly borders on Central Asia. "The Syrian operation showed that the Caspian Sea is a safe launching pad for cruise missiles. It can accommodate our warships armed with high-precision weapons. The sea is out of reach for potential adversaries and third country navies," he said.

At present the Caspian flotilla includes missile warships of the latest projects. It operates the Tatarstan and the Dagestan missile ships of project 11661K, the Grad Sviyazhsk, the Uglich, the Veliky Ustyug corvettes of project 21631 and the Stupinets missile boat of project 12411, the Izvestia said.

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