Russia, China and Iran are engaged in joint naval exercises in the Gulf of Oman.
Among the ships taking part in the manoeuvres is the Russian frigate Admiral Gorshkov, a ship equipped with the fearsome Tsircon hypersonic missiles.
The Russian defence ministry said in a statement that the trilateral exercises dubbed the “Marine Security Belt 2023” had begun in the vicinity of the Iranian port of Chabahar.
During the naval drills, the ships will perform “joint manoeuvres and will carry out artillery firing in the daytime and at night,” the statement said.
These are the second naval exercises conducted by Russia and China so far this year as Moscow seeks to shore up ties with Beijing and Tehran.
Last month, they took place off the coast of South Africa and involved the South African navy.
President Vladimir Putin has sought to ramp up political, economic and military ties with China and Iran after he sent troops to Ukraine a year ago, triggering multiple rounds of unprecedented Western sanctions.