HMS Mersey escorted Russian warship Mudryy, plus her supporting tanker Yelnya and the seagoing tug Viktor Konetsky on Saturday as the trio entered the UK’s area of interest on Saturday.
The passage was entirely routine and legal.
The Royal Navy say that Mersey was conducting a fishery enforcement patrol, ensuring trawlermen abide by fishing rules in UK waters when she received the task to meet up with the Russians.
The Mudryy is a Neustrashimyy-class frigate believed to be heading from the Baltic to the Indian Ocean to participate in exercises with the Indian Navy.
It is standard practice for Russian warships to be accompanied by support vessels when heading out on prolonged deployments.
“It is a testament to my ship’s company’s professionalism and commitment that such a small team can switch focus to successfully achieve whatever the nation requires of them,” said Mersey’s Commanding officer Lieutenant Commander Will Edwards-Bannon.
“I am very proud of the way they responded to this change in Mersey’s tasking. The Royal Navy is used to working alongside our allies to uphold the rules-based international system, both in home waters and around the globe. As ever, I am very grateful to the friends and families of all of us who serve in Mersey for their continued support as we work hard to protect our nations’ interests.”