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Vietnam commissions two Kilo-class submarines


The flag raising ceremony on the HQ-182 Hanoi. A Vietnam Navy photo

HANOI (BNS): The Vietnam People's Navy has commissioned two Russian-built Kilo-class submarines into its fleet.

The two new diesel-electric submarines -- HQ-182 Hanoi and HQ-183 Ho Chi Minh City -- were commissioned during an official ceremony held at the Cam Ranh port in Khanh Hoa province on Thursday.

The event, attended by Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung and Deputy Minister of National Defence and Commander of the Navy, Adm. Nguyen Van Hien, marked the official beginning of operations of Vietnam's first submarine brigade, as well as the new development of the Vietnam People's Navy and the Vietnam People's Army in general, the Defence Ministry said in a statement.

Vietnam had inked a deal worth $2 billion with Russia in 2009 to buy the six conventional submarines to augment its maritime prowess. The contract also entailed training of Vietnamese submarine crews in Russia.

While the first vessel was delivered in January this year, the second sub arrived in the country in March.

The St. Petersburg-based Admiralty Shipyard, which is building the stealth submarines, plans to deliver the third vessel, Hai Phong, in November this year.

All six submarines are scheduled for delivery by 2016.

The submarine features advanced stealth technology, extended combat range, modern inertial navigation system and the ability to strike land, surface and underwater targets. It can operate at a maximum depth of 300m and at a range of 9,600km for 45 days.

The submarines have 533-milimeter torpedo tubes and are armed with torpedos, mines, and Kalibr 3M54 cruise missiles.

In recent times, Vietnam has increasingly focused on reinvigorating its military might by acquiring new platforms and weapons amidst growing regional tension over the South China Sea where Hanoi is entangled in a complex territorial dispute with China, Brunei, Malaysia, the Philippines and Taiwan over a chain of Islands.

Tags:

Vietnam  Navy  Submarine  Kilo  Russia  

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