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MOSCOW, August 14 (Itar-Tass) – Member states of the CIS joint air defense system have started drills dubbed as Combat Commonwealth 2013, a spokesman for the Russian Aerospace Defense Troops, Col. Alexei Zolotukhin, told Itar-Tass on Wednesday.
“The drill started from switching units of the Russian Aerospace Defense Troops deployed in the Moscow region to full combat readiness,” he said. “The exercises consist of three stages and will last until September 12. They will bring together over 500 servicemen, 100 units of military hardware and equipment, including S-400 Triumph, S-300 Favorit air defense missile systems and Pantsir-S short-range air defense systems.”
At the first stage, troops will master switching to full combat readiness at the places of their deployment. This stage will end with re-deployment of servicemen and military hardware of air defense units to a testing range in Ashuluk in the Astrakhan region, southern Russia, where an active phase of the drills will take place.
“Personnel and hardware will be taken to the range by trains and planes,” Zolotukhin said.
Taking part in the drills are air defense units from Russia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan. “Other member-states of the CIS joint air defense system are participating in the drills as observers,” he said.