MOSCOW, September 15. /TASS/. The closing ceremony of the Russian-Belarusian military exercise Zapad-2021 took place at the Mulino proving ground, in the Nizhny Novgorod Region, the Russian Defense Ministry told the media on Wednesday.
"The exercise Zapad-2021 showed that we have the ability to create major combined groups, plan combat operations in any directions, stop any aggression and carry out a resolute strike to produce a sobering effect on any enemy," Deputy Defense Minister Yunus-Bek Yevkurov said at the closing ceremony.
He stressed that in the course of the exercise the combined group demonstrated the skills acquired over a year of routine training and tight interaction in coping with tasks on the battlefield.
Taking part in the exercise were personnel from the military units of the Western Military Region, senior staff officers and personnel of the military contingents from Armenia, Belarus, India, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan and Mongolia and a representative of Sri Lanka’s military delegation.
The most distinguished soldiers received the Defense Ministry’s awards.
Strategic exercise Zapad-2021
Russia and Belarus hold a strategic exercise once in two years. Zapad-2021 was the closing stage of joint military training this year. The two countries' forces were conducting drills on September 10-16 at nine sites in Russia, in the Baltic Sea, and at five sites in Belarus.
Involved in the drills were up to 200,000 troops, 80 planes and helicopters, 760 combat vehicles, including 290 tanks, 240 artillery pieces and multiple rocket launchers and 15 ships.
The maximum number of personnel participating in the exercise subject to the Vienna Document of 2011 in the territory of Russia does not exceed 6,400. All command centers and forces are to be back to their permanent location by the middle of October.