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MOSCOW, July 24. /TASS/. Russia’s Strategic Missile Force has started maneuvers in the Orenburg Region with the involvement of a missile brigade from the Central Military District and Iskander-M tactical missile systems, Aide to the District’s commander Yaroslav Roshchupkin said on Friday.
"Today a missile formation of the Central Military District located in the Orenburg Region was alerted in a surprise combat readiness check," Roshchupkin said.
The maneuvers at the Totsky firing range 40 km (25 miles) east of the town of Buzuluk will feature missile strike control with simulated launches from Iskander missile systems. The exercises involve over 500 missile personnel and more than 50 pieces of combat hardware.
Before these maneuvers, Russia’s Strategic Missile Force held the longest and large-scale drills in February on the territory of over 20 Russian regions, from Tver in west Russia to Irkutsk in East Siberia. These drills involved over 30 missile regiments.
Overall, the Russian Strategic Missile Force is scheduled to hold over a hundred command and staff, tactical and special exercises this year.
The Russian Army held a total of over 2,000 drills and field training exercises in the first half of 2015, Defense Minister Sergey Shoigu said earlier.
Specifically, Iskander-M missile systems carried out simulated and live-fire launches in the Volgograd and Astrakhan Regions in south Russia while artillery units held maneuvers at the Russian military base in Armenia, and troops of the Southern and Central Military Districts practiced the delivery of fire at shooting ranges in the Kemerovo, Orenburg and Chelyabinsk Regions with the involvement of the Msta-S self-propelled howitzers, Tornado-G multiple launch rocket systems and Khosta self-propelled artillery guns.
The Russian Armed Forces’ exercises this year follow large-scale serial maneuvers in 2014 when Russia’s ground forces alone carried out over 1,500 training drills for motor rifle, tank, artillery and reconnaissance units, and also for army air defense formations and signal troops, the Defense Ministry said earlier.