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BRUSSELS, April 26 (Itar-Tass) —— Russia and NATO plan to expand their military cooperation, chief of the Russian Army General Staff, General of the Army Nikolai Makarov said.
Russia and NATO plan to hold several joint exercises in 2012, including “the Pomor marine search and rescue exercise in the North”.
“We attach great significance to the upcoming tactical exercise of the Defence Ministry’s military medical service in St. Petersburg code-named Rubezh-2012,” Makarov said.
Speaking about the joint fight against sea piracy, the general said “new communication and navigation systems will be installed, including those made in NATO [countries] in order to improve interaction and exchange of information at sea”.
Among key areas of cooperation in 2012 Makarov also named Afghanistan and logistics.
“However, the cornerstone of our joint work is the search for solutions concerning missile defence,” he added.
In the framework of the NATO-Russia Council and in accordance with the guidance from the Lisbon Summit, the fifth theatre missile defence (TMD) computer assisted exercise (CAX) was conducted in Ottobrunn, Germany on March 26-30, 2012.
The aim of the exercise was to develop, explore and assess various options for conducting missile defence in Europe, taking into account the results of previous TMD cooperation between NATO and Russia. The exercise results will contribute to the work on the Joint Analysis of the future framework for missile defence cooperation.
The exercise was hosted by the German Air Force supported by NATO Military Authorities and the Extended Air Defence Task Force. Russian and NATO experts participated in the exercise, the alliance said.
NATO Secretary-General Anders Fogh Rasmussen said the exercise was useful and helped both sides practice certain missile defence tactics in Europe. The exercise involved about 60 experts from Russia and NATO countries.