Russian flagship Aircraft carrier leaves for Mediterranean Sea
The deployment of the Admiral Kuznetsov aircraft carrier comes weeks after Defence Minister Sergei Shoigu said the ship would be sent to the eastern Mediterranean to boost the country's naval forces in the area.
The Admiral Kuznetsov is travelling with the Pyotr Veliky battlecruiser, the Vice-Admiral Kulakov destroyer and large anti-submarine ships, the ministry said.
In addition to safeguarding maritime navigation, the ships are meant to "respond to new types of modern threats like piracy and international terrorism," the ministry said.
This is the first time that the Soviet-era Kuznetsov -- Russia's only aircraft carrier part of its Northern fleet based in Murmansk -- will join the Russian deployment after undergoing a refurbishment.
The defence ministry did not specify how long the aircraft carrier's mission would last.
Russia has a base in government-controlled Syrian territory from which it has flown most of its bombing raids in the country.