The annual drill by China and Russia is the largest marine operation
which is conducted under a bilateral framework since 2012, China’s
People’s Liberation Army (PLA) Navy announced on its official Sina Weibo
According to the PLA Navy, in the naval exercise, the South China Sea
Fleet of the PLA Navy will be the major participating force of China.
Previously, China’s major participating forces were North and East Sea
The marines will carry out live-fire drills, island landing and defense
operations, said Liang Yang, a spokesperson of the PLA Navy.
Liang noted that the exercise featuring surface ships, submarines,
fixed-wing aircraft, ship-borne helicopters and marines will include
aerospace defense, anti-submarine operations, naval and air battle, and
island and reef seizure.
Xi Jingsong, deputy director of the National Institute for South China
Sea Studies, told the Global Times on Sunday that the drill could also
be pertinent to Japan’s new move over the Diaoyu Islands, about which
Chinese President Xi Jinping and Chinese Premier Li Keqiang have
expressed serious concern and warned Shinzo Abe’s administration.
Yang Yujun, a spokesperson of China’s Defense Ministry, said in July
that the drill will consolidate and develop the China-Russia
comprehensive strategic partnership of coordination, deepen pragmatic
and friendly cooperation between the two militaries, and enhance the
capabilities of the two navies to jointly deal with maritime security
threats, the Xinhua News Agency reported.