The flotilla is making its way past Newhaven and Seaford and expected to be sailing in the south west lane by Beachy Head and Eastbourne within the next hour.
The Russian military vessels are being shadowed by British naval ships as the Ministry of defence said it would be “man-marking the convoy every step of the way” while near UK waters.
A Russian tug, believed to be in convoy with the taskforce, entered the channel first off the coast near Ramsgate at around 8am this morning.
The ships are within international waters and the Russian vessels – including the aircraft carrier Admiral Kuznetsov are believed to be heading to the eastern Mediterranean.
It is the only carrier in the Russian navy and can carry more than 50 aircraft. Its weapons systems include granit anti-ship cruise missiles.