The President of Russia was accompanied on the observation deck of the central command post of the training range by Defence Minister Sergei Shoigu, Chief of the General Staff of Russia’s Armed Forces, First Deputy Defence Minister Valery Gerasimov, Minister of National Defence of the People’s Republic of China Wei Fenghe, Deputy Chief of the Joint Staff Department of the People’s Liberation Army of China Shao Yuanming, and Brigade Commander of the Mongolian Armed Forces Ganselem Lkhagvasuren.
Vladimir Putin inspected the mobile command post and attended the review of troops.
After the exercises, the President presented military honours to ten military personnel from Russia, China and Mongolia for their performance during the manoeuvres. Four service personnel from the Armed Forces of Russia, four from the People’s Liberation Army of China and two officers of the Armed Forces of Mongolia received the awards.
During the main stage of these manoeuvres, units of the Russian Armed Forces, the Chinese People’s Liberation Army and the Mongolian Armed Forces repelled a hypothetical enemy attack, launched an offensive and defeated the main hypothetical enemy forces.
Acting on the Russian side in the maneuvers were motorised rifle and tank units of its Ground Forces, assault landing units of the Airborne Force, missile and artillery units, air defence units, tactical and army aviation units, long-range and military-transport aviation aircraft, a combat engineers’ brigade and an NBC (Nuclear, Bacteriological, Chemical) regiment, special forces, drone operators and logistics/technical support units.
The Chinese People’s Liberation Army deployed motorised rifle, armoured, artillery, surface-to-air missile, combat engineer and pontoon units, as well as aviation. Units of the Mongolian Armed Forces were also involved in practical operations.
On September 11–15, the Vostok 2018 manoeuvres are held in Russia’s Far East and adjacent areas of the Pacific Ocean, involving about 300,000 Russian service personnel, over 1,000 fixed-wing aircraft, helicopters and drones, up to 36,000 tanks, armored personnel carriers and other vehicles together with up to 80 ships and support vessels.
The manoeuvres mostly aim to assess the readiness of troop control divisions planning and conducting long-range troop re-deployments, cooperation between ground forces and naval elements, to provide commanders and headquarters personnel with practical experience and to streamline their troop control skills. These are the largest manoeuvres in the history of the Russian Army.
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Remarks during the review of troops
President of Russia, Supreme Commander-in-Chief of Russia Vladimir Putin: Comrades soldiers, sergeants, warrant officers,
Comrades officers and generals,
Representatives of the People’s Liberation Army of China and the Armed Forces of Mongolia,
I am happy to welcome all of you and all the participants in the Vostok 2018 manoeuvres.
This is the first time that our army and navy are challenged to undergo a complex and large-scale test of this kind. Personnel from two military districts and two fleets, the Northern Fleet and the Pacific Fleet, are taking part in the manoeuvres with a total of about 300,000 military personnel, tens of thousands of weapons and military vehicles.
These manoeuvres are designed to test the combat readiness of our troops in a thorough and comprehensive manner and in all its key aspects, including command facilities, formations and units, as well as their interaction and coordination.
The most active stage of these manoeuvres is about to be completed here, on Tsugol training range in Trans-Baikal Territory. You have performed it at a high level. All units and formations have fulfilled their objectives. You have demonstrated your military skill, and showed that you can effectively resist potential military threats.
I would like to express special gratitude to the military personnel from the People’s Republic of China and Mongolia.
We share a long-standing and solid tradition of brotherhood in arms. Russia will always honour the courage of the heroes of the battle of Khalkhyn Gol. We will never forget that during the Second World War our countries were allies and fought the aggressor together. Today we share an important task of ensuring stability and security across the Eurasian space.
Russia is a peace-loving nation. We do not have and cannot have any plans of aggression. Our foreign policy is designed to promote productive cooperation with all interested countries. It is for this reason that 87 observers from 59 countries are present at these exercises. I welcome all of them here.
To the Russian military personnel, I would like to say that our duty toward Russia, our Motherland, is to be ready to stand up for its sovereignty, security and national interests, and support our allies, if required.
For this reason, we are committed to further strengthening our Armed Forces and supplying them with the most up to date weapons and equipment, as well as promoting international cooperation. I strongly believe that you, Russian officers and soldiers, are well aware of your high responsibility to deliver on these international tasks, and that you will always remain faithful to your duty and oath, and enrich Russia’s military tradition.
As the Supreme Commander-in-Chief, I would like to thank all the participants in the Vostok-2018 military manoeuvres for your good work, professionalism and skill.
I wish you good health, high spirits and every success.
Thank you for your service.