Russia sends fleet of warships towards Australia ahead of G20 summit

Russia has sent a fleet of warships towards Australia ahead of the G20 summit of world leaders to be held in Brisbane this weekend.

The Russian fleet includes the guided missile cruiser Varyag, destroyer Marshal Shaposhnikov, the tug boat Fotiy Krylov and supply tanker Boris Butoma, the Australian reported. The fleet left Vladivostok on October 23.

The fleet was believed to be in the Coral Sea, South of Bougainville, Papua New Guinea on Wednesday evening, news.com.au reported. The warships could be in waters off Brisbane by Saturday, according to 7 News.

Australia deployed the naval ships HMAS Parramatta and HMAS Stuart to monitor the Russian ships in the Coral Sea earlier this week. An Australian P-3 Orion surveillance aircraft was also sent to shadow the Russian warships, the Australian reported.

The Russian embassy has said the warships were performing routine activities and had no intention of entering Australian waters, unless by invitation, according to the Australian.

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