Russia will participate in joint NATO military exercises. The exercise is scheduled to take place off the coast of Pakistan in 2021. A statement from the Russian Ministry of Defense confirmed the matter on Thursday.
The statement said that Russia would participate in military exercises with the US-led NATO alliance.
This is the first time in the last decade that the country is going to participate in any NATO coalition exercise.
Russia’s Ministry of Defense says an anti-piracy exercise called Aman-2021 will be held in February in the Pakistani port city of Karachi with the participation of the NATO alliance. Members of the Russian Navy will also participate.
Naval forces from the United States, United Kingdom, Turkey, Pakistan, Japan, and China are also expected to join 30 countries of practice.
Russia last participated in a military exercise with NATO in Spanish waters in 2011.
This unusual practice is taking place at a time when tensions between Russia and the NATO alliance are running high, and Russia has sometimes complained that NATO forces are increasing their military presence at their doorsteps. In response to Russia’s accusations, NATO forces continue to accuse Moscow of destabilizing Ukraine.
Relations between NATO and Western allies have deteriorated rapidly after Russia’s removal of Crimea from Ukraine in 2014.
Regarding Russia’s involvement in military exercises with NATO, Wana Lungsku, a spokesman for the alliance, said: “Our practical cooperation with Russia has been suspended. As a result, NATO has no plans to conduct military exercises with them. However, if any country wants to participate in the upcoming exercise, it is their own decision.