Putin To Brief China’s Xi on Russia-NATO Talks

Kremlin informed journalist that Russian leader Vladimir Putin will Chinese Xi Jinping next month.

Mr. Putin will travel to Beijing next month, Kremlin spokesperson Dmitry Peskov said on Tuesday.

Mr. Putin is set to attend the opening ceremony of the Beijing Winter Olympics on Feb. 4. Russia and China have moved closer together as both have come under increasing pressure from the West – Moscow over its military build-up near Ukraine and Beijing over trade and human rights.

At about that time, Russia and Belarus will rehearse repelling an external attack when they hold joint military drills.

Russian military forces and hardware began arriving in ex-Soviet Belarus on Monday for the “Allied Resolve” drills to be held near Belarus’s western border with NATO members Poland and Lithuania, and close to its southern flank with Ukraine.

The goal of the exercise is to fine-tune the tasks of suppressing and repelling external aggression during a defensive operation, countering terrorism and protecting the interests of the Union State (Russia and Belarus), the Interfax news agency quoted Deputy Russian Defence Minister Alexander Fomin as saying.

Mr. Fomin said 12 Sukhoi Su-35 fighter jets, two units of the S-400 anti-aircraft missile system and a Pantsir missile system would be deployed to Belarus for the drills.

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