Serbia's president has confirmed that Russian S-400 and Pantsir-S air-defense missile systems are participating in joint Serbian-Russian military exercises.
"The S-400 is in the country because of this exercise and I'll go see it tomorrow " Aleksandar Vucic said on October 24, in response to a reporter's question at a ceremony to mark the arrival of the first freight train from China in Belgrade.
Russia's Defense Ministry had earlier in the day said that the two missile systems were participating in military drills with Serbia.
The ministry that the surface-to-air missile systems will be deployed at the Batajnica base, outside the Serbian capital, Belgrade.
It is the first time that an S-400 battalion and a Pantsir-S battery will appear in military drills outside Russia, a ministry statement said.
The units will participate in the second stage of the Russian-Serbian air defense exercise Slavic Shield 2019 that is running until October 29.
The first phase took place in the southern Russian region of Astrakhan in September.
Although Serbia aspires to join the European Union, it has kept close ties with Russia.
During a visit to Belgrade last week, Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev said he expected his Serbian counterpart, Ana Brnabic, would sign a free-trade agreement with the Russia-led Eurasian Economic Union when she visits Moscow on October 25.
Vucic Confirms Presence Of Russian S-400 Missile Systems In Serbia