India-Russia begin joint military exercise in northern India

Updated: 00:00 GMT, Jan 1, 1970 | Published: 09:29 GMT, Nov 20, 2018 |

With soldiers marching and military brass bands playing, Russia and India began their joint military drills on Monday (November 19) in India‘s northern city of Jhansi.

Branded INDRA 2018, the drills, which will end November 28, involve about 500 Russian and Indian soldiers and include training of the United Nations peacekeeping operations.

India and Russia have a long history of cooperation in the military field and have been holding joint war games for several years now with the involvement of all the three services of their armed forces.

INDRA 2018 is taking place at a time of heightened tension between the West and Russia, and NATO has said it will monitor the exercise closely, as will the United States which has a strong military presence in the Asia-Pacific region.

In September Russia held its biggest manoeuvres since 1981, called Vostok-2018 (East-2018), mobilising 300,000 troops in a show of force close to China’s border which included joint drills with the Chinese and Mongolian armies.

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