- Russian Troops Set off to Belarus for Joint Military Drills
- Russia Invites US Experts to Attend Zapad-2013 Military Drills
- Russia Starts Preparing for Zapad-2013 War Games
- 13,000 Troops to Take Part in Russia-Belarus Exercise
MOSCOW, September 17 (RIA Novosti) – A scenario involving potential military action in Syria will not be part of the upcoming large-scale Russian-Belarusian military exercise Zapad-2013, a senior Russian defense official said.
“I am taking the full responsibility by saying that the [Zapad-2013] drills will focus on practicing various forms of interoperability between branches of armed forces, including an assault landing,” Russia’s First Deputy Defense Minister Arkady Bakhtin said on Monday.
Zapad-2013 is a joint Russian-Belarusian exercise due to be held on September 20-26. It will involve over 13,000 personnel, about 250 combat vehicles and some 60 aircraft and helicopters.
The drills will take place in Belarus and in Russia’s Western Military District, as well as in the Barents and Baltic seas, according to the Russian General Staff.
Military observers from more than 60 countries accepted the Russian invitation to monitor the exercise, Bakhtin said.
Moscow and Minsk held similar large-scale military drills in September 2009. They involved about 12,500 servicemen and up to 200 pieces of military hardware.
Add to blog
You may place this material on your blog by copying the link.
Image Galleries: Hungry Hippos, Tiny Tamarins and Other Animal News
Infographics: First Russian Smartphone
New ties between Russia and Japan would mark not only a breakthrough in their relations but also a significant shift in Northeast Asia’s political dynamic. Both are secondary players in a region overshadowed by an increasingly assertive China, which has not hesitated to push against the boundaries of its neighbors.