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Russia To Hold Military Exercises With Belarus, China, India, Mongolia This Year

Russian says the country's land forces will join troops from Belarus, China, India, and Mongolia in a series of joint military training exercises during the second half of this year.

The Kremlin made the announcement on May 13 as President Vladimir Putin met with top Russian military officials in the Black Sea resort of Sochi.

The statement said the drills will focus on peacekeeping and antiterrorist activities.

Moscow has been especially keen to build closer ties with China and India as its relations with the West plummeted to post-Cold War lows following Russia's annexation of Crimea and its support for separatists in Ukraine.

The Chinese and Indian president joined Putin in Moscow on May 9 for a military parade marking the 70th anniversary of the defeat of Nazi Germany in World War II.

Western leaders boycotted the event.

Based on reporting by Reuters and Interfax

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