KALININGRAD, September 10. /TASS/. Ships, aircraft and costal defense troops from the Baltic Fleet will accomplish a number of tasks during the Russian-Belarusian exercise Union Shield-2015, which started on Thursday, Fleet spokesman Captain 2nd Rank Vladimir Matveyev said.
Command and control organizations, ships and naval aircraft, as well as costal defense units were put on alert on Thursday morning.
"The Baltic Fleet’s ships have started to prepare for going to sea. On receiving the command, the ships will leave their permanent bases and head for the assigned area in the Baltic Sea to accomplish tactical missions on order of higher headquarters," Matveyev said.
The costal defense troops are moving towards the areas where march columns will be formed, after which they will have to conduct long marches to firing ranges in the Kaliningrad Region, the officer added.
During the march, the servicemen supported by aircraft will repel a simulated enemy’s attack, in particular, air assaults, and cross notionally contaminated areas, he said.
They will practise live firing from all types of organic weapons at the firing ranges.
The aircraft will deliver bombing attacks and provide fire support for the ship strike groups and the coastal defense troops.
The exercise will involve up to 20 ships, motor boats and vessels, more than 1,500 servicemen and about 200 pieces of combat and special hardware, more than 10 aircraft and helicopters.
It was reported earlier that the Russia-Belarus Union Shield-2015 drill had started in the Pskov and Leningrad Regions on Thursday. The exercise will last through September 16. The maneuvers involve more than 8,000 troops, about 400 pieces of military hardware, including nearly 100 tanks and about 80 aircraft. More than 1,000 Belarusian servicemen arrived in Russia with their hardware and weapons.