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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Calm Seas Aid Kursk Divers

Taking advantage of calm seas, divers on Monday continued preparations for lifting the sunken Kursk nuclear submarine to the surface around Sept. 25.

The divers were clearing 26 holes pierced in the submarine's hull and installing guides to help attach cables to hoist the Kursk, the navy said.

The cables are to be connected to hydraulic jacks anchored to a huge barge, which is being loaded with supplies and is expected to sail toward the Kursk later this week. The operation is run by the Dutch Mammoet-Smit International consortium, which is working to raise the Kursk on a $65 million contract with the Russian government

Deputy Prime Minister Ilya Klebanov reaffirmed Monday that the Kursk is expected to be raised to the surface on Sept. 25 and towed to a dry dock near the port of Murmansk five days later, Interfax reported.

But he warned that the operation may fail to provide clues to what caused the Kursk to sink Aug. 12, 2000, during maneuvers in the Barents Sea, killing all 118 men aboard.