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People's Daily Online

Russian-Indian military drills not against China: Russian FM

People's Daily Online

(People's Daily Online) 15:47, August 18, 2017

Russia's Foreign Ministry on Thursday denounced speculation that its upcoming military drills with India are targeted at China, adding that Russia has brilliant relations with China.

"Russia does not carry out military exercises or other cooperative events that may lead to worsening relations of a country we maintain multilateral ties with," Russian Foreign Ministry spokesperson Maria Zakharova was quoted as saying by Xinhua News Agency on Thursday.

Zakharova also expressed confidence that China and India can resolve their border tensions, adding that attempts to distort the situation can only be viewed as a provocation.

The remarks were made at a time when a two-month standoff casts a shadow on Sino-Indian relations. According to Indian media outlets, the joint war game from Oct. 19 to 29 will take place in three locations in Russia, including the country's Far East, a sensitive spot that borders China.

Other than the joint drills, India plans to buy over $10 billion worth of weapons from Russia. According to Defense News, India may purchase Russia's S-400 air defense system, four Admiral Grigorovich-class frigates, and 200 Kamov 226T light utility helicopters, which will significantly boost India's military power.

Ermankov, director of the Center for Military and Political Studies from Russian Institute for Strategic Studies, told Xinhua that the military drills are held regularly and is not directed against any third country.

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