Addressing a traditional Monday meeting government officials in the Kremlin, Vladimir Putin said he was leaving for Severodvinsk, Russia's military base on the White Sea, on Tuesday, December 4 to attend the inauguration of a new Northern Fleet submarine alongside sailors and the General Staff. He also reminded the government to hold a meeting of Russia's Naval Board as it was planned. Earlier in the day, Severodvinsk's machine-building plant Sevmash hosted the ceremony of signing an acceptance certificate for a new generation multipurpose nuclear submarine called Gepard, which crowns a series of 14 submarines of the Bars type. According to navy experts, the Gepard, whose construction began 10 years ago, is the most advanced underwater missile carrier that combines the latest achievements of Russian submarine construction. With its displacement of almost 13,000 tons, the Gepard is a quiet vessel with a maximum speed of 33 knots and a diving limit of 600 meters. It is armed with cruise missiles with nuclear warheads. According to Vladimir Chuvakin, the deputy director of the plant and the head of the materiel construction department at Sevmash, test runs at sea and missile firing trials at a sea test range have proved that the submarine is ready to be put into service.
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