"To help those who are in distress is the duty of everyone who is at sea—no matter their origins, skin color, religion, or views," the rescue group's chairman said.
The live-fire exercise is labeled as a drill against possible terrorism risks, but it's also a show of force close to Russia's only warm-water naval base overseas.
Details of the latest tragedy in the Mediterranean Sea remain unclear, but the latest reports come one year after 800 people died there prompting an international outcry and European crisis talks.
European officials are meeting again with their Turkish counterparts to attempt to finalize a deal that would see a "one in, one out" system for migrants, as thousands have been plucked from boats.
VICE News teamed up with the humanitarian organization MSF, also known as Doctors Without Borders, to document its mission in the Mediterranean, and speak to some of migrants and refugees who have survived one of the deadliest routes to Europe.