Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Defense: Sweden continues to suffer from Russian submarine syndrome

Source: Pravda.ru
Sweden continues to suffer from Russian submarine syndrome

Swedish Armed Forces continue to inspect the waters near the Stockholm archipelago to establish the presence of a foreign submarine in the area. However, the military do not hurry with making conclusions about what kind of an object exactly could be staying in the Swedish waters.

"It could be a submarine or a midget submarine. It could also be a diver using stand-alone means for movement in the water. It could be several divers who have nothing to do on our territory. These are the options that could be referred to as foreign underwater activity," Swedish military officials said.

Earlier, the Swedish newspaper Svenska Dagbladet reported that a foreign submarine (presumably a Russian one) could be staying among the islands of the archipelago of Stockholm. According to sources of the publications, the military intercepted radio signals from an unidentified underwater object located in the  territorial waters of Sweden. The radio receiver, the newspaper wrote, was located in Russia's Kaliningrad. It was noted that the broadcast was conducted on the frequencies that the Russian Navy uses in extreme situations. The publication therefore concluded that the submarine could be experiencing a state of emergency.

Spokespeople for the Russian Defense Ministry officially stated that there were no accidents with Russian submarines recorded. According to representatives of the department, all vessels perform routine tasks in the areas of the oceans; no states of emergency were recorded.

Experts are also confident that the information about a foreign submarine near the coast of the kingdom is unconvincing. In addition, the information about the signal of distress sent to Kaliningrad has nothing to do with reality.

"Sweden has had the syndrome of Russian submarines since 1981, when a Soviet submarine, due to a navigation error, entered Swedish territorial waters and ran aground near the main base of the Swedish Navy, Karlskrona. Since then, prior to adopting the defense budget, a "Russian submarine" always appears in the Swedish waters. Later, though, it turns out that the submarine was actually a shoal of fish, seals, or abandoned fishing nets," chairman of the St. Petersburg Club of Submariners, Igor Kurdin told Interfax, vest.ru reports.

According to him, there are several channels of communication on board submarines. Registering the fact of radio broadcast is possible, although, it is impossible to either intercept or decrypt it. Establishing the direction of the radio signal is impossible due to laws of physics, the expert said.

Meanwhile, it was reported that a foreign submarine that was detected in the area of the Stockholm archipelago, may belong to the Netherlands Navy, Interfax reported with reference to the Russian Defense Ministry. It was the Dutch submarine Bruinvis that was conducting practical operations last week near Stockholm. The photos that appeared in the Swedish press, were made at the time, when the sub was practicing emergency ascent.

Sweden's Rear Admiral Anders Grenstad said at a press conference that the search for a foreign submarine in the region of the Stockholm archipelago continued. He noted that Sweden had no information about the affiliation of the detected object. The official did not confirm local media reports, according to which a Russian submarine was allegedly in distress in the Baltic Sea.

A source in the headquarters of the Russian Northern Fleet said that the submarine, which, according to the Scandinavian media, was detected in the Swedish waters, could not be Russian. Russian diesel submarines are in Kaliningrad, Kronstadt and the Northern Fleet, whereas the only carrier of mini-submarines was awaiting repairs. The source excluded a possibility for nuclear submarines (submarines of the Russian Northern Fleet are mostly nuclear-powered) to maneuver in the waters of the Baltic Sea due to inconsiderable depth.

Two of the three diesel submarines stationed at the Northern Fleet - B-806 Dmitrov and B-227 Vyborg - are respectively staying at the Krondshtad Shipyard and in Kaliningrad. The third submarine, Saint Petersburg, is currently in the Northern Fleet. The only vehicle for midget submarines, submarine Orenburg, currently awaits repairs.