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MOSCOW, May 7. /TASS/. A group of China’s combat ships will arrive at the Novorossiysk port for the first time on Friday to participate in the celebration of the 70th anniversary of the Soviet victory over Nazi Germany in WWII, a Russian Navy spokesman said on Thursday.
"A group of the Chinese Navy’s combat ships comprising the Linyi and Weifang escort ships will arrive at the Novorossiysk naval base on May 8," Russian Navy spokesman Captain First Rank Igor Dygalo said.
From Russia’s side, the Pytlivy escort ship and the Samum missile-carrying hovercraft, which are part of the Russian Black Sea Fleet, will participate in the festivities in Novorossiysk, the spokesman said.
The Chinese combat ships passed through the straits area and entered the Black Sea on May 4. The ships are now moving southeast of the Crimean peninsula.
The group of the Chinese combat ships will leave Novorossiysk on May 12 for the Mediterranean Sea to hold joint naval drills with Russia dubbed Joint Sea 2015, the spokesman said.
Russia’s Defense Ministry said on Tuesday the Joint Sea 2015 naval drills would be held on May 11-21.
"The active phase of the exercises will be held in the Mediterranean Sea. The subject of the joint drills is the protection of navigation safety in the remote areas of the World Ocean. The main aim of the exercises is to further deepen friendly and practical interaction between the two countries and strengthen joint efforts for countering naval security threats at sea," the ministry said.
The Russia-China naval drills "are not aimed against any third country and have no relation to the political situation in the region," the Russian Defense Ministry said.
The Joint Sea 2015 exercises will involve about 10 warships from the Russian and Chinese navies, Russia's Defense Ministry said.
China’s Defense Ministry said earlier nine surface ships would take part in the joint naval drills, including the Linyi, Weifang and Weishanhu warships from the Chinese navy.
The sailors will practice "maritime defense, maritime replenishment, escort actions, joint operations to safeguard navigation security as well as real weapon firing drill."