Russia and China have set dates for joint military exercises to be held this summer, the Chief of China’s General Staff said.
The first, Naval Interaction 2013, will be held in the Sea of Japan between July 5 and 12, and the other, Peace Mission 2013, will take place in Russia’s Urals region July 27 through August 15, Colonel General Fang Fenghui, Chief of General Staff of the Chinese People's Liberation Army (PLA) said after meeting with Russian Army General Valery Gerasimov.
Rather than being aimed at any third party, these drills are designed to strengthen ties in joint military training and improve coordination between the two countries’ Armed Forces, China’s General Staff Chief added.
The two countries first held Peace Mission joint exercises in 2005.
In late May, a spokesman for Russia’s Central Military District told RIA Novosti that Peace Mission 2013 would involve 600 personnel from each country.
The two military officials also discussed bilateral collaboration and reaffirmed their course toward strategic partnership. Colonel General Fang said the two sides have agreed to deepen their collaboration and take bilateral military ties “to a new level.”
Russia and China have held several joint military exercises since 2005 under the framework of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO).
Founded in 2001, the SCO comprises Russia, China, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan. It aims to consolidate efforts to counter terrorism and radicalization among member countries, and to coordinate work in other areas such as politics and trade.
Moscow and Beijing have recently vowed to strengthen military cooperation to ensure an adequate and prompt response to common threats.
Source: RIA Novosti