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Strategic exercise Kavkaz-2016 begins in Russia's Southern Military District

New types of weapons, military equipment and control systems will be tested within the exercise involving some 12,500 troops

MOSCOW, September 8. /TASS/. A strategic command staff exercise codenamed Kavkaz-2016 with 12,500 troops taking part has begun in the Southern Military District, the Russian Defense Ministry has said.

"The Kavkaz-2016 exercise is the final phase of a package of command staff and special practices and drills for military command bodies and snap checks of troops’ combat readiness due in 2016. It will be held at test sites of the Southern Military District, the Black and Caspian sees on September 5-10," the Defense Ministry said in a news release obtained by TASS.

"Taking part in the exercise there are about 12,500 troops, aviation, combat vehicles and naval vessels," Defense Ministry’s press-service said.

One of the special tasks of the Kavkaz-2016 exercise will be to test new types of weapons and other military equipment and command systems.

There are plans for organizing the operation of command posts of all levels with the use of the newest automation means, practice mobilization readiness and territorial defense measures and widely employ aviation and the forces of the Black Sea Fleet and the Caspian flotilla.

The Defense Ministry’s press-service recalled that within the framework of preparations for the Kavkaz-2016 exercise twelve special logistics drills were held in August. On August 25-31 there was a series of combat readiness span checks involving the forces of the southern, western and central military districts, the Aerospace force and the Airborne Troops.

In 2015 the Russian Armed Forces held a strategic exercise called Center-2015, with about 95,00 troops, 170 aircraft and 20 ships taking part.