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19 Jun, 2023 08:18

Russian warship rescues dozens of passengers off Greece – MOD

The frigate Admiral Gorshkov was diverted from a convoy mission in the Mediterranean
Russian warship rescues dozens of passengers off Greece – MOD

A Russian warship has rescued dozens of people from a vessel which sent out a distress signal in Greek territorial waters, the Russian Defense Ministry has reported.

The incident happened overnight and involved the Admiral Gorshkov frigate, the statement said. It was escorting the Pizhma bulk carrier in the Mediterranean Sea towards the Syrian port of Tartus, when it made a diversion to assist a yacht, Avalon, which had lost propulsion.

A total of 68 people were rescued and transferred to the Russian cargo ship, the report said. The Russian convoy then sailed to the Greek island of Kalymnos to hand the rescued individuals over to the Greek coast guard.

The ministry said the yacht was sailing under the flags of Germany and Greece.

The Admiral Gorshkov is the lead ship of its class. It was launched in 2010, commissioned in 2018 and serves as part of the Russian Northern Fleet. Last year it drew media attention after becoming the first warship armed with new hypersonic Zircon missiles.

Last Wednesday, an overcrowded fishing boat sank off the Greek coast while allegedly transporting over 600 of would-be migrants from Libya. Local media reported days after the disaster that most of the passengers remained unaccounted for and may have died.

Pro-migrant activists have accused the Greek authorities of failing to act fast enough, but the Hellenic Coast Guard has claimed that people on board the vessel had rejected assistance.