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ALABINO MILITARY TRAINING GROUNDS, August 1. /TASS/. The International Army Games that opened in Russia on Saturday will help to strengthen trust between the armies of different countries, Russian Defence Minister Sergey Shoigu said.
The games have been launched at Alabino military training grounds outside Moscow in a spectacular military and sports festival.
Athletes, actors and Russian military acted out episodes from different epochs, from Ancient Greece and Ancient Rus’ to the present-day history of the Russian Armed Forces.
Spectators could also see a ‘tank ballet’ that has already become a compulsory element of tank biathlon, a mechanized military sport invented by the Russian military, followed by an air show by the Russian Knights aerobatic display team.
"It is gratifying to say that people bearing arms and riding awe-inspiring military hardware are meeting here, on the hospitable Russian soil, as friends, that at the end of their competitions they will shake hands with a smile and joy in their rivals’ success," Shoigu added.
He also marked that the first army games of such scope were being held in the year of the 70th anniversary of Soviet defeat of Hitler’s forces in the 1941-1945 Great Patriotic War.
A total of 57 teams from 17 countries will participate and more than 1,500 reporters will cover the International Army Games that will be held in various parts of Russia from August 1 through August 15.
"Within two weeks we will be witnessing hot contests of tankers, pilots, paratroopers, sea-soldiers, artillerymen, reconnaissance men, as well as military of other specialties," the minister said.
A total of fourteen contests will be held as part of the International Army Games. Their list includes Tank Biathlon, AviaDarts, the Caspian Cup, the Suvorov Onslaught, and others.
The International Army Games will be held at 10 Russian military ranges.