PORTSMOUTH-based Royal Navy frigate HMS St Albans escorted a Russian warship through the North Sea yesterday.
The Type 23 frigate was called to sail on December 23 and keep watch on the new Russian warship Admiral Gorshkov as it passed close to UK territorial waters.
HMS St Albans remained at sea on Christmas Day to monitor the Russian frigate. The ship is due to return to Portsmouth today.
Commander Chris Ansell, the commanding officer of HMS St Albans, said: ‘My ship’s company take great pride in serving Great Britain and the role they play dealing with both the routine and unexpected. Missing parts of Christmas with our families is never easy, but it is required as part of our duty to keep Britain safe all year round.’
HMS Tyne was also called to escort a different vessel, a Russian intelligence-gathering ship, through the North Sea and English Channel on Christmas Eve.
Defence secretary Gavin Williamson said: ‘I will not hesitate in defending our waters or tolerate any form of aggression.’