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Russia Stands Against NATO-Georgia drills

By Gvantsa Gabekhadze
Monday, August 6
Russia continues to oppose NATO-Georgia joint military drills, claiming the exercises harm the regional stability.

The Russian Foreign Ministry spokesperson Maria Zakharova not only criticized the drills last week but also said that it was worrying that other regional counties were also involved in the Noble Partner multinational exercises.

“We cannot agree with the statement of the Ministry of Defense of Georgia that these exercises aim at ensuring security in the Black Sea region. Stability and security are constructive dialogue and not helicopters and tanks," said Zakharova.

“The genuine goal of these exercises is to demonstrate forceful pressure, first of all over South Ossetia, Abkhazia, and Russia,” she said.

Zakharova added that Moscow expresses regret that Georgia's neighbors are involved in the training.

Multinational exercise "Noble Partner 2018" opened on August 1 and will end on August 15.

Under the slogan Strength Through Partnership, the exercise is being hosted by the Vaziani Military Base in the outskirts of Tbilisi for the fourth time.

Soldiers from 13 nations are involved in the drills: Georgia, the US, the UK, Germany, Estonia, France, Lithuania, Poland, Norway, Turkey, Ukraine, Azerbaijan, and Armenia.

The exercise, which aims to enhance participating nations’ readiness and interoperability, is complicated and includes command-staff and field training, combined with combat shootings, as well as the interaction of combat support elements in defense and attack operations.