KANT AIRBASE /Kyrgyzstan/, October 14. /TASS/. The rapid reaction forces of the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO) have successfully completed the Cooperation-2018 exercise, Russia’s Central Military District Commander Alexander Lapin said on Saturday.
"All objectives of the exercise have been achieved, the tasks have been successfully completed," Lapin said.
The final phase of the ‘Cooperation 2018’ military drills among CSTO (Collective Security Treaty Organization) member states took place at the Edelweiss training range in Kyrgyzstan on Saturday. Military contingents of CSTO's Collective Operational Deployment Forces practiced countering "illegal armed groups."
The aviation group that took part in the exercise included 29 aircraft, including Tu-95 MS strategic bombers. For the first time, a group of Orlan-10, Takhion and Leer drones also participated, providing continuous aerial survey for precise strikes on simulated militant groups.
The General Staff of the Kyrgyz Armed Forces said in a statement that the exercises involved air assault teams, motorized infantry and artillery units, special-purpose groups, as well as military transport planes, strike aircraft and army aviation.
"The Cooperation-2018 exercise was overseen by CSTO Deputy Secretary General Pyotr Tikhanovsky, Chief of the CSTO Allied Staff Col. Gen. Anatoly Sidorov, Russian Central Military District Commander Lt. Gen. Alexander Lapin, heads of CSTO national parliamentary committees on defense and international cooperation and deputy head of the of the Kyrgyz General Staff Kurmanychbek Orozmatov," the statement reads.
The main goal of the exercise was to "develop forms of joint planning and operations" of the CSTO Collective Rapid Reaction Forces. It was held in line with the schedule, approved in 2017 by the CSTO defense ministers and national security council heads.
The Interaction-2018 drills of the CSTO Collective Rapid Reaction Forces were underway at the Edelveis practice range in Kyrgyzstan on October 10-13. They involved more than 1,600 troops from the six CSTO member countries: Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Russia and Tajikistan, and also about 300 pieces of military hardware and 40 aircraft and helicopters.