September 20, 2013
Russia and Belarus Launch Strategic Military Exercise Zapad 2013
By ITAR-TASS and RIA Novosti
The ministry emphasized that the sides will also check the provisions of new statutory documents, developed in the armed forces of Russia and Belarus for the joint employment of troops.
At the first phase of Zapad 2013, the joint command will pay attention to the planning of the employment of the regional group of forces, command and control of troops during their deployment, blocking of the areas of activities of illegal armed groups, build up of the Air Force and Air Defense troops. At the second phase, the issues of command and control of troops in joint actions of the military command and troops at ranges will be addressed. The maneuvers will last until September 26.
From RIA Novosti: About 12,000 Russian servicemen will take part in joint biannual military exercises of Russia and Belarus beginning on Friday. . . .
Observers from over 60 states will attend the two-stage drills, which will also involve “rapid-reaction” units from the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO).