Russian War Ships Hold Drills in Bearing Sea, huge Military Excercise

Reporting by Tom Balmforth; Editing by Andrew Osborn, Reuters

Russian Fleet

MOSCOW (Reuters) – Russian warships held drills in the Bering Sea which separates Russia from Alaska, part of Moscow’s biggest military maneuvers since the fall of the Soviet Union.

The Vostok-2018 (East-2018) drills, which run until Sept. 17, are taking place in Siberia and in waters off Russia’s eastern coast, involving 300,000 troops, over 1,000 military aircraft and two naval fleets.
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The drills are taking place at a time of heightened tension between the West and Russia, and NATO has said it will monitor the exercise closely, as will the United States which has a strong military presence in the Asia-Pacific region.

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President Vladimir Putin inspected the war games on Thursday, vowing in a speech to soldiers to strengthen the Russian army and supply it with new generation weapons and equipment.

Putin said Russia was a peaceful country ready for cooperation with any state interested in partnership, but that it was a soldier’s duty to be ready to defend his country and its allies.

The Ministry of Defence aired footage on Friday of the Northern Fleet’s Vice-Admiral Kulakov destroyer and the Alexander Obrakovsky landing ship taking part in a mock-up rescue operation in the Bering Sea.

Other footage showed scores of paratroopers leaping from a plane and descending from helicopters by ropes in the eastern Siberian territory of Zabaikalsk.

The ministry also broadcast clips of missiles being launched from its S-300 long-range surface-to-air missile system and its Buk medium-range missile system.

Reporting by Tom Balmforth; Editing by Andrew Osborn
Our Standards:The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

 

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