Published: Thu, September 13, 2018
People | By Leon Thompson

Russia's Putin inspects war games and vows to beef up army

Russia's Putin inspects war games and vows to beef up army

The massive Vostok-2018 exercise is being carried out from September 11 to 17 under the command of Russian Defense Minister Army General Sergei Shoigu on the soil and in the waters of Russia's Far East and in the neighboring waters of the Pacific Ocean.

"This is the first time our army and fleet have undergone such a hard and large-scale test", Putin said in comments published on the Kremlin website and noted by the Reuters news agency.

The exercises, that involve over a thousand military aircraft as well as up to 36,000 tanks, come amid tense relations between Russian Federation and the West that have fallen to a post-Cold War low.

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"Russia is a peaceful nation", Putin said Thursday, according to the AP, before adding that it must "be ready to protect its sovereignty, security and national interests, and, if necessary, support our allies".

More than 3,000 Chinese troops have joined the Russian military in the maneuvers aimed to showcase burgeoning military ties between Moscow and Beijing amid their tensions with the U.S.

Four servicemen of the Russian Armed Forces, four servicemen of the Chinese People's Liberation Army and two officers from the Mongolian Armed Forces received various medals from the Russian president.

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