Tuesday, July 2, 2013

China to join Russia for largest naval drills with foreign partner

The Guardian
July 2, 2013

Chinese sailor
A People's Liberation Army sailor. The Chinese and Russian militaries have begun taking part in joint exercises in the past decade. Photograph: Jerome Favre/EPA
China will join Russia later this week for its largest-ever naval drills with a foreign partner, underlining deepening ties between the former cold war rivals along with Beijing's desire for closer links with regional militaries.
China has long been a key customer for Russian military hardware, but only in the last decade have their militaries begun taking part in joint exercises.
China's defence ministry said on Tuesday that its navy would send four destroyers, two guided missile frigates and a support ship for the exercises, which start on Friday in the Sea of Japan and run until 12 July.
The ships departed on Monday from the port of Qingdao, where China's Northern Fleet is based, and headed for the rallying point in Peter the Great Bay near Vladivostok.
"This marks our navy's single biggest deployment of military force in a China-foreign joint exercise," the ministry said.

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