Russian-Chinese Naval Drills Begin in the Pacific

The second Russian-Chinese naval drills this year will be based off the Russian Far East port city of Vladivostok

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This article was translated at Russia Beyond the Headlines on August 20th

Russia and China launched their Joint Sea-2015 (II) naval exercises in Vladivostok on August 21, the Staff of the Russian Eastern Military District has reported.

"All in all, both sides have contributed 22 ships and support vessels, up to 200 airplanes and helicopters, more than 5,000 marines and 40 units of hardware to the drills," the military district said in a press release seen by Interfax-AVN on August 21.

During the active phase of the naval maneuvers, from August 24 to August 27, the two countries' naval crews will practice joint counter-sabotage, anti-submarine, air defense and anti-ship defense operations. They will also hold live-fire exercises against different types of surface, underwater and air targets.

"The exercises will culminate in a joint seaborne and airborne forces landing operation at the Klerk training range in Southern Primorye. It will be the first joint landing operation of Russian and Chinese marines on Russia's territory," the press release says.

The first phase of these Russian-Chinese maneuvers took place in the Mediterranean Sea in May.The drills will be wrapped up on August 28 by summing up their results and holding a naval parade and a see-off ceremony in the Peter the Great Gulf.

Russian Navy Deputy Commander Vice Admiral Alexander Fedotenkov and Deputy Commander of the Chinese People's Liberation Army Navy Rear Admiral Wang Hai, who are coordinating the current drills, announced that the joint staff and all the forces were ready for the maneuvers.

Fedotenkov noted that 2015 "has become a crucial year for the Navy of Russia and the Navy of the Chinese People's Liberation Army."

"For the first time in the history of Russian-Chinese naval cooperation, our joint exercises are taking place in remote districts with varying navigation features," the admiral was quoted as saying by the press service.

"The first, Mediterranean, stage of the drills showed that Russian and Chinese sailors are able to effectively perform their tasks in a complicated district such as the Mediterranean Sea. I have to say that a large amount of joint work has been accomplished by the command staff. All details of the drills have been analyzed thoroughly. The personnel are ready to tackle the set tasks," he said.

The Chinese admiral, for his part, said that "we ought to be prepared to repel any modern-day threats, including emerging ones. We should perfectly realize that peace at sea is a guarantee of our states' economic development and a guarantee of peace across the world."

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