LAST UPDATE: 13.35
Chinese soldiers will travel to Russia to participate in joint military exercises with Russia and other countries including India, Belarus and Tajikistan, China’s Defense Ministry announced on Wednesday, according to Reuters.
China’s participation in the joint exercises is “irrelevant to the current international and regional situation,” the ministry said in a statement.
The exercises are part of an ongoing bilateral annual cooperation agreement, the Chinese ministry added. Similar Russian-led joint exercises involving China have been held in recent years.
“The objective is to deepen the practical and friendly cooperation with the militaries of the participating countries, enhance the level of strategic cooperation between the participating parties and strengthen the ability to respond to various security threats,” the statement also said.