Russia Starts Snap Drills of Central District Air Force, Air Defence Group
Russian Air Force will redeploy more than 100 aircraft to operational air fields over the next 24 hours as part of snap drills, the Defence Ministry announced on Tuesday.
The four-day snap drills, planned to test the combat readiness of Air Force and Air Defence grouping of the Central Military District were launched on Monday. The aircraft of the Central Military District are being reinforced with groupings from the Western and Southern Military Districts.
About 12,000 military personnel, up to 250 aircraft and 700 pieces of military hardware will take part in the war games that will focus on the deployment of aircraft control system in field conditions, the organisation of support for pilots in new base areas and the relocation of air defence troops by railway.
The surprise Russian air defence drills coincide with NATO-led military exercise in the Arctic mounted in response to earlier Russian military exercises over the Baltic and Northern Europe. About 100 fighter aircraft and 4,000 military personnel from the US and eight European countries, including non-NATO allies Finland, Sweden and Switzerland, are taking part in the Arctic Challenge exercise.
According to the Russian Defence Ministry ministry, long-range aircraft will exercise cruise missile strikes on ground targets at the Pemboi firing range in Siberia. The drills are meant to help the Russian military prepare for the Tsentr-2015 strategic exercises to be held in September, which are expected to be the largest of the 4,000 military exercises planned to take place in Russia during 2015.
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