Russian warships in the eastern Mediterranean Sea drove away a Dutch submarine that Moscow contended was shadowing its squadron in a "dangerous" way.
Russian Defense Ministry spokesman Major General Igor Konashenkov said Russian Navy destroyers spotted the Walrus-class submarine on November 9 while it was 20 kilometers away from the Admiral Kuznetsov aircraft carrier.
Russian destroyers tracked the submarine for more than an hour before forcing it to leave the area, Konashenkov said without elaborating how they drove off the submarine.
"Such clumsy attempts to dangerously maneuver within immediate proximity of a group of Russian vessels could lead to grave navigation accidents," Konashenkov warned.
A NATO official said the alliance was monitoring the Russian fleet in a "measured and responsible way" out of concern the navy buildup could presage more intensified Russian military activity in Syria, where Moscow has been supporting the regime with air strikes against armed rebels
In a tweet, the Dutch Defense Ministry said it does not comment on operations conducted by its submarines.
Russia's only aircraft carrier has been accompanied by a missile cruiser and other ships in what has been the Russian Navy's largest deployment since the Soviet Union collapsed in 1991.
Based on reporting by AP, Reuters, Interfax, and TASS