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As Russia Plans New Caspian Assault Ship, Some Wonder: Assault Whom?

The Murena amphibious assault ship, due to enter the Caspian Flotilla in 2017. (photo: Almaz Shipbuilding, Khabarovsk)

Russia's plans to introduce a new amphibious assault ship into its Caspian Flotilla has raised questions among just which of its neighbors' shores Russia envisages assaulting. 

The new ship will join the Caspian Flotilla next year, according to a report by the Ministry of Defense-run TV Zvezda. The ship is designed to carry marine assault teams, including 140 troops and one tank or two armored personnel carriers, up to a beach. 

"There is a valid reason for strengthening the Caspian Flotilla with this vessel," TV Zvezda reported. It quoted military analyst Alexander Mozgovoy: "The region is extremely unstable. There are both our North Caucasus republics, where terrorist groups appear quite often, and also the nearby states."

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As Russia Plans New Caspian Assault Ship, Some Wonder: Assault Whom?

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