“We have fully fulfilled the 2004 plan of combat readiness of our fleet’s submarine forces. The plan for 2005 is as strenuous: we’ll operate in the near and remote ocean zones,” Abramov said. “The Defence Minister and the Commander-in-Chief of the Navy have set norms for a pre-set potential of military security,” he said. “We are keeping up with the potential. We have everything to maintain it,” Abramov said. He added that priority in the Defence Ministry’s budget funding for the upkeep of the fleet falls on the marine-based strategic nuclear forces.
“The submarine forces constitute the basis of the Northern Fleet. They concentrate the main attack potential ensuring military security for the Russian Federation,” the commander stressed. Abramov noted that it is above all the maritime strategic nuclear forces, as well as the general purpose forces, including both nuclear and diesel submarines. “The present Northern Fleet is a formidable force. It is larger than the British and French fleets combined. Properly used, the Northern Fleet and its submarine forces create a good potential for the military security of the Russian Federation,” Commander Abramov said, RIA-Novosti reported.