Chinese officials announced on August 17 that the country’s People’s Liberation Army (PLA) will participate in military exercises with Russian forces in the Russian Far East.
The exercises are led by Russia and involve India, Belarus, Mongolia, Tajikistan and other countries, China’s defense ministry said in a statement.
Participation in the exercises is part of an ongoing bilateral annual cooperation agreement with Russia, he added.
“According to the annual plan of cooperation between the militaries of the two countries and the agreement of the parties, the People’s Liberation Army will soon allocate part of its forces to Russia to participate in the Vostok 2022 exercise,” China’s defense ministry said. Said.
China’s participation in the joint exercises is “irrelevant to the current international and regional situation,” the ministry added.
Ministry of Defense of Russia announced Despite the bitter war with Ukraine, the “Vostok” (East) strategic military exercises will be held from August 30 to September 5. At the time, the Russian government said that some foreign forces would participate. mentioned, but did not name.
China’s defense ministry said Wednesday that it will “deepen practical and friendly cooperation with the militaries of participating countries, enhance the level of strategic cooperation between the participating parties, and strengthen the ability to respond to various security threats.” is the purpose,” he said.
According to the translation of statement According to Russian media, the Russian Defense Ministry said the exercises would involve 13 training areas in the Eastern Military District. , Uspenovsky, Tsugol.
They will also be joined by airborne forces, long-range and military transport aircraft, and troops of foreign armies.
Russia’s defense ministry also said its ability to conduct such training had not been affected by the invasion of neighboring Ukraine or the “special military operations” that President Vladimir Putin refers to, and that the Russian military needed All personnel, weapons and equipment.
“We draw attention to the fact that only part of the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation is involved in special military operations. [in Ukraine]their number is sufficient to carry out all the tasks set by the Supreme Commander, ”said a statement from the Russian Defense Ministry.
He also accused some foreign media of spreading “false information” that Russia was carrying out some mobilization measures.
The last such exercise was held in 2018, when China participated for the first time along with Mongolia.
The exercises come as the war between Russia and Ukraine escalates and tensions between China and Taiwan continue to rise. It was further heightened by US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s visit to the autonomous islands earlier this month.
Relations between the United States and Russia and China have deteriorated, with U.S. officials accusing the Chinese Communist Party of considering providing military support to Russia against an invasion of Ukraine.
Chinese President Xi Jinping announced an “unrestricted” partnership with Russia in February. At that time, Moscow said it “reaffirmed its support” for Beijing’s view that Taiwan is its territory and should be taken by force if necessary, while China supported Russia’s objections. did. Further expansion of NATO.
China has also neither refused to impose sanctions on Russia nor condemned its aggression against Ukraine.
Reuters contributed to this report.