China and Russia to conduct regular war games together, says Russian minister

China and Russia to conduct regular war games together, says Russian minister

Wednesday, September 12, 2018

Moscow and Beijing plan to conduct regular joint war games similar to those being held this week, Russia’s defence minister said.

Sergei Shoigu and his Chinese counterpart Wei Fenghe have visited the Tsugol firing range in eastern Siberia where nearly 300,000 Russian troops and 3,200 Chinese troops are participating in military exercises.

The war games, Vostok 2018, last a whole week after being launched on.

The games span vast expanses of Siberia and the Far East, the Arctic and the Pacific Oceans.

They involve 1,000 Russia aircraft and 36,000 tanks.

China sent 900 combat vehicles and 30 aircraft to join the drills at Tsugol.

Mongolia has also sent a military contingent.

 

‘A more assertive Russia’

The military exercise is set to be the largest since the Cold War.

As the manoeuvres began on Tuesday, Chinese President Xi Jinping visited Russia to attend an economic forum in Vladivostok.

President Vladimir Putin treated him to pancakes with caviar and shots of vodka in a show of their warm personal ties.

Nato spokeswoman Oana Lungescu said the exercise "fits into a pattern we have seen over some time: a more assertive Russia, significantly increasing its defence budget and its military presence".

She added: "China has growing military capabilities and is playing an increasingly significant global role. It's important for Nato to engage with China."