As the Russian PM Medvedev arrives in Vietnam for a visit, on his agenda will be to seek access to the Vietnamese port Cam Ranh for the Russian Navy. Vietnam is already an important export market for Russian arms.
The satellite launch company Sea Launch, which launches satellites on rockets from a mobile sea platform that have its main land service base in San Diego in California, is contemplating to move its operations to Cam Ranh. Sea Launch is majority owned by the Russian company Energia since emerging from bankruptcy in 2010.
Russia currently only has one naval base on foreign soil, Tartus in Syria, which is under threat from the civil war in Syria. In addition to Vietnam, Russia is in talks with Cuba and the Seychelles on establishing bases for its navy.
According to Israeli news outlet DEBKAfile, which is known to be close to Israeli secret services, a joint military exercise is to be held in less than a months time by Iran, China, Russia and Syria on Syrian soil. The exercise would be one of the biggest ever held in the Middle East with over 90,000 personnel. According to the report, Beijing have already asked Egyptian authorities to permit the passage through the Suez Canal in late June of 12 naval ships heading for the Syrian port of Tartus, where Moscow maintains a naval and marine base.
The news has not yet been confirmed by official sources and could, of course, be a case of deception. What has been confirmed though is that Russia is deploying two warships to the Syrian port of Tartus, both ships are said to carry large number of marine soldiers.