VLADIMIR PUTIN has sent three nuclear submarines to the Baltic Sea in a show of force to the UK.

Following the skirmishes with the UK Navy last month, a Russian Oscar-II Class nuclear-powered cruise missile submarine has been seen entering the Baltic Sea. Two other nuclear-powered submarines were also identified in the waters with one thought to have nuclear missiles. HI Sutton, a defence analyst said the manoeuvres had been intended as a show of force by the Russian government.

The analyst also revealed this is the first time three nuclear submarines have been sent.

He told The Daily Telegraph: “Russia has been sending nuclear submarines to the naval parade in St Petersburg for several years, but this is the first time three submarines have been sent.

“They are the only nuclear submarines in the Baltic.

“These deployments act as a show of strength for both home and foreign audiences.

“Nato and unaligned Baltic States will likely keep a careful eye on this submarine.”

The presence of three nuclear submarines comes as Russia-UK tensions escalated after the Royal Navy vessel, the HMS Destroyer was seen in the Black Sea last month.

After discovering the ship in the waters, the Russian government claimed a warning shot had been fired at the warship.

They also claimed the warship continued its course before a Su-24M warplane dropped incendiary bombs in the ship’s path.

Following the incident, the army’s military attache and ambassador to Russia, Deborah Bronnert were both summoned by the government.

Putin later claimed the incident had been a deliberate provocation by the UK as the ship passed near to the Crimean peninsula.

He added: “They know they cannot win this conflict: we would be fighting for our own territory; we didn’t travel thousands of miles to get to their borders, they did.”

Despite the Russian government’s claims, the Ministry of Defence stated the ship had been conducting an innocent passage mission through the waters.

They also rejected any report that shots were fired towards HMS Defender.

The Ministry of Defence said in a statement: “No warning shots have been fired at HMS Defender.

“The Royal Navy ship is conducting innocent passage through Ukrainian territorial waters in accordance with international law.

“We believe the Russians were undertaking a gunnery exercise in the Black Sea and provided the maritime community with prior warning of their activity.

“No shots were directed at HMS Defender and we do not recognise the claim that bombs were dropped in her path.”

The UK Government, like its allies, does not recognise Russia’s illegal annexation of Crimea.