Published On: Sat, Sep 15th, 2018

Russia news: World War 3 fears as Putin holds HUGE ‘INVASION’ in war games | World | News

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The drills, part of Vostok-2018, took place on Saturday despite Tokyo’s concerns about a Russian military build up in the area.

Tanks and soldiers were seen emerging from a landing ship on the beach at Klerka training ground on the Sea of Japan coast.

It comes as Japan have raised concerns, which date back to World War Two, about a military build up by the Kremlin near the disputed Kuril Islands. 

Other pictures show a tank rolling out of a Russian landing ship Oslyabya while two helicopters circle above the waters in a mock landing in eastern Russia.

Oslyabya can also be seen as it accompanied by two planes during the exercise.

The Vostok-2018 (East-2018) drills, which run until September 17, are taking place in Siberia and in waters off Russia’s eastern coast, involving 300,000 troops, over 1,000 military aircraft and two naval fleets.

It comes amid heightened tension between the West and Russia, following the poisoning of ex-spy Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia.

NATO has said it will monitor the exercise closely, as will the US which has a strong military presence in the Asia-Pacific region.

China and Mongolia are also participating in Vostok-2018, with Beijing sending about 3,200 troops, 900 weapons, 30 planes and helicopters, at Russia’s Tsugol training range near where the borders of Moscow, China and eastern Mongolia meet.

President Vladimir Putin inspected the war games on Thursday, vowing in a speech to soldiers to strengthen the Russian army and supply it with new generation weapons and equipment.

Mr Putin said Russia was a peaceful country ready for cooperation with any state interested in partnership, but that it was a soldier’s duty to be ready to defend his country and its allies.

Earlier this year, Defence Minister Sergei Shoigu said the drills would be on an ”unprecedented in scale, both in terms of area of operations and numbers of military command structure, troops and forces involved,” adding that it will also be “the largest preparatory action for the armed forces since Zapad-81”.

Zapad-81 Soviet war games were the largest exercises ever held back in 1981, with about 100,000 to 150,00 troops participating.

It comes after the Ministry of Defence aired footage on Friday of the Northern Fleet’s Vice-Admiral Kulakov destroyer and the Alexander Obrakovsky landing ship taking part in a mock-up rescue operation in the Bering Sea.

Other footage showed scores of paratroopers leaping from a plane and descending from helicopters by ropes in the eastern Siberian territory of Zabaikalsk.

The ministry also broadcast clips of missiles being launched from its S-300 long-range surface-to-air missile system and its Buk medium-range missile system.

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