Address at the ceremony for presenting the Order of Nakhimov to nuclear-powered missile cruiser Pyotr Veliky 2013-01-10 18:30:00 Severomorsk President of Russia Vladimir Putin: Good afternoon, comrade officers and sailors, Today the missile cruiser Pyotr Veliky is awarded the Order of Nakhimov. This military decoration was introduced during the Great Patriotic War as a tribute to the glory, courage and feats of the sailors who made a great contribution to the victory over the enemy. Today, the Order of Nakhimov has regained the prestigious status of a state decoration. I see it as yet another symbol of the revival and development of the Army and Navy’s historical martial traditions. Pyotr Veliky is a ship that is without equal in the world. Both the cruiser and its crew rightly deserve this decoration. The cruiser has repeatedly excelled in long sea missions, performed combat duty and flew the Russian flag in key strategic areas of the world’s oceans. The crew has successfully carried out its missions and showed impeccable professionalism, skills and bravery. Courage, valour and honour were always characteristic of our sailors. So it was under Peter the Great, when the Russian fleet was born, and in the days of Admiral Nakhimov, the legendary naval commander and hero of the Sevastopol defence, as well as during World War I and the Great Patriotic War. Today the Navy sailors here in the Northern Fleet and other fleets perform their duty with honour and make a major contribution to enhancing security and improving the defence capability of our homeland. I want to emphasise again that the development of strong and effective Navy is one of Russia’s key priorities. We will consistently develop underwater and surface vessels, strengthen conventional forces and naval strategic nuclear forces. In coming years, the fleet will receive over one hundred new surface ships and submarines of different classes. We are fully committed to implementing this ambitious programme. At present the Russian shipyards are developing and building new ships; design centres are creating new marine technology. A new nuclear-powered missile submarine Yury Dolgoruky will be commissioned into the Navy today. We are planning to build up the rate of the fleet’s renewal and growth. Comrades, I am sure you will continue to serve the fleet, your country and the people of Russia. I thank the crew of the Pyotr Veliky cruiser for conscientiously performing their military duty. I wish you good health and success in the service to Russia. I congratulate the Pyotr Veliky cruiser on receiving the Order of Nakhimov.