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China Says Will Send Troops to Russia for Joint Exercise

China Says Will Send Troops to Russia for Joint Exercise

Wednesday, 17 August, 2022 - 10:30
Female soldiers of an artillery unit take part in the live fire Han Kuang military exercise, which simulates China's People's Liberation Army (PLA) invading the island, in Pingtung, Taiwan May 30, 2019. REUTERS/Tyrone Siu

Chinese troops will travel to Russia to take part in a joint exercise with Russia and other countries including India, Belarus and Tajikistan, the Chinese defense ministry said on Wednesday.

China's participation in the joint exercises is "unrelated to the current international and regional situation," the ministry said in a statement.

Taiwan's defense ministry said 21 Chinese aircraft and five Chinese ships had been detected operating around Taiwan on Wednesday as Beijing continued military activities near the island.

That included five aircraft that crossed the Taiwan Strait's median line, it added, which in normal times acts as an unofficial barrier between the two sides.

The exercises announced Wednesday by China are part of an ongoing bilateral annual cooperation agreement, the defense ministry said. Similar Russian-led joint exercises involving China have taken place in recent years.

"The aim is to deepen practical and friendly cooperation with the armies of participating countries, enhance the level of strategic collaboration among the participating parties, and strengthen the ability to respond to various security threats," the statement said.

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