A senior Iran Navy officer says Russian destroyer Marshal Shaposhnikov has docked at Bandar Abbas port. “Marshal Shaposhnikov, a Russian Udaloy-class destroyer, has docked at this port with the aim of strengthening military ties between Iran and Russia,” Vice-Admiral Hossein Azad said on Wednesday. In November, Russian Caspian Flotilla Commander Rear Admiral Sergei Alekminski called for closer cooperation between Iranian and Russian naval forces. He said that a fleet of Russian ships and frigates would pay a visit to an Iranian port in 2013.
Iran Navy Commander Rear Admiral Habibollah Sayyari said in February that the naval forces of a number of neighboring countries have expressed desire to send fleets to Iran and Tehran is ready to welcome them.Sayyari added that exchanging naval fleets with other countries helps increase cooperation and mutual understanding. Iran Navy has been multiplying its naval presence in international waters. Iranian warships have visited some of the country’s neighboring and friendly countries including Syria, Sudan, Oman and Saudi Arabia. Iran Navy has also sent vessels to the Indian Ocean and dispatched two ships via the Suez Canal to the Mediterranean Sea for the first time in February 2011. MYA/HGH/SS