SCO anti-terror drill kicks off in China

Updated: 2014-08-24 18:52


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ZHURIHE -- A multinational anti-terror drill was kicked off by the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) in north China's Inner Mongolia on Sunday.

Deputy chiefs of the general staff from China, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan and deputy commander of Russia's eastern military command participated in the opening ceremony of the drill at the Zhurihe training base.

The joint exercise code-named "Peace Mission 2014" is scheduled to run from Aug 24 to Aug 29 and aims to deter the "three evil forces" of terrorism, separatism and extremism, said Wang Ning, chief director of the drill and deputy chief of the general staff of the People's Liberation Army.

"The drill focuses on joint multilateral decision making and action, with exchanges of anti-terror intelligence among the SCO members to effectively boost the troops' coordinated ability to fight terrorism," Wang said.

A total of 7,000 troops from China, Russia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan have been dispatched to the Zhurihe training base for the drill, including ground and air forces, special operations and airborne troops and others tasked with electronic countermeasures, reconnaissance, mapping and positioning.

Drones, airborne early warning aircraft, air-defense missiles, tanks and armored vehicles have also joined the exercise.

The relationships of the SCO members are "unbreakable" and the joint drill will certainly strengthen their resolve and capability to fight terrorism, said deputy commander of Russia's eastern military command Tselko.

The exercise scenario involves a separatist organization, supported by an international terrorist organization, plotting terrorist incidents and hatching a coup plot to divide the country. The SCO dispatches military forces to put down the insurrection and restore stability at the request of the country's government.

Founded in Shanghai in 2001, the SCO groups China, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Russia, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan. Afghanistan, India, Iran, Mongolia and Pakistan are observers. Belarus, Turkey and Sri Lanka are dialogue partners.