The “Joint Sea 2016” drill will go ahead between Sept. 12 and 19 in the South China Sea, off Guangdong.
Wang Hai, Chinese chief director of the exercise and deputy commander of the Chinese Navy, said that this year marks the 20th anniversary of the two sides establishing strategic cooperation.
The two sides have conducted six joint navy drills in five years, and the drill will enhance the abilities of both sides to counter common security threats, said Wang at the welcoming ceremony.
Chinese Navy spokesperson Liang Yang said the drill will feature the highest level of standardization, combat and digitalization in recent China-Russia drills.
Participants will undertake joint air defense, anti-submarine operations, landing, island-seizing, search and rescue, and weapon use.
The Russian Navy will bring three surface ships, two supply ships, two helicopters, 96 marines, as well as amphibious armored equipment.
Most of the Chinese forces come from the Nanhai Fleet under the People’s Liberation Army Navy, with some from the Beihai Fleet and Donghai Fleet.
A total of 10 ships from the Chinese Navy, including destroyers, frigates, landing ships, supply ships and submarines, will take part in the drill, as well as 11 fixed-wing aircraft, eight helicopters and 160 marines, and amphibious armored equipment.
According to a Chinese Defense Ministry spokesperson in July, the drill will not target a third party.
Liang said the joint navy drill will feature in-depth coordination between the navies of the two countries.
The drill will make use of a China-Russia joint command information system for the first time, Liang said, adding that the system is capable of sending, receiving and sharing information among all command posts and combat units at all levels.p The paperwork and command processes during the drill will be standardized and optimized to make organizational work more effective, the spokesperson said.
Liang said the “deep coordination at a high level” between the two countries’ navies will further deepen practical cooperation, promote friendship and enhance mutual trust between the two navies. – Agencies
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