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Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)

300 Russian soldiers, 40 aircraft taking part in Belarus exercises

RIA Novosti

19/06/2006 15:47

MOSCOW, June 19 (RIA Novosti)-More than 300 Russian servicemen and 40 aircraft are taking part in command and staff exercises with Belarus, a senior Air Force officer said Monday.

Chief of Air Force Staff Boris Cheltsov said Russia was deploying Tu-160 Blackjack and Tu-95 Bear strategic bombers, Su-24M Fencer tactical bombers, Su-27SM Flanker fighters, two new Mi-28N Night Hunter attack helicopters and a modernized A-50 Mainstay AWACS plane during the June 17-25 Union Shield 2006 exercises in Belarus.

The exercise also involves a total of 8,800 servicemen, 40 tanks, 180 armored infantry carriers, 140 anti-tank guided missiles and 30 multiple launch rocket systems.

Military observers from over 40 countries have been invited to attend the exercise that aims to practice interoperability of a joint regional contingent in the framework of the Collective Security Treaty Organization, which unites six former Soviet republics.

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