Russia holding military exercise in Tajikistan

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DUSHANBE (TCA) — A major military exercise by Russian motorized infantry units to counter terrorist attacks on Russian mountainous military facilities kicked off on September 24 at the Lyaur training ground in Tajikistan, Russia’s TASS news agency reported.

The exercise, which will run until September 28, has about 600 servicemen and more than 80 units of hardware taking part in it.

“Within the framework of the drill, a motorized infantry battalion of Russia’s 201st military base, reinforced by a tank platoon and two multiple launcher rocket system battalions will be rebuffing a simulated attack by terrorists on Russian military facilities and will be conducting search operations in mountainous areas,” the press service of the Russian Central Military District told reporters.

“The Russian military will advance into the mountains to search for and destroy mobile groups of simulated terrorists in jihadmobiles,” the press service added.

The 201st military base stationed in Tajikistan is Russia’s biggest military facility outside the country. It is located in two cities — the capital Dushanbe and Bokhtar. Under an agreement signed in October 2012, the facility will remain in Tajikistan until 2042.

The 201st military base is part of the military force of the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO) which includes Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Russia, and Tajikistan.

CSTO is aimed to protect its member states from military and terrorist threats, including from war-torn Afghanistan that borders Tajikistan.

Sergey Kwan

TCA