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China has sent 88 heavy ground combat vehicles, including tanks to Chebarkul for the “Peace Mission – 2013”.
Combat vehicles were transported across 5,080 km through the trans-Siberia railway artery.
The exercises are being held under the aegis of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) and are divided into three phases – troop deployment, battle planning and simulated combat.
The drills aim to strengthen ties in joint military training and improve coordination between the two countries’ armed forces.
Konstantin Sivkov, Vice President of the Academy of Geopolitical Problems says although Russia and China are capable of carrying out UN mandates the exercises are a good opportunity to boost coordination.
“This is a sign of Russia and China’s growing role in international security affairs. The growing instability in the Middle East and in North Africa demands a requisite capacity to implement peace missions and these joint exercises will help do just that,” Sivkov told The BRICS Post.
Sivkov also stressed that as “ Western power wanes, China, India and Russia, with BRICS partners will increasingly take centre-stage in peace missions.”
The joint exercises involve 1,500 Russian personnel and over 250 pieces of military hardware, including 20 aircrafts and helicopters.
Moscow and Beijing have recently vowed to strengthen military cooperation to ensure an adequate and prompt response to common threats.
The earlier “Joint Sea – 2013” exercise with Russia was China’s largest naval drill with a foreign partner.
By Daria Chernyshova in Moscow, Russia for The BRICS POST, with inputs from Agencies