China and Russia kick-started a nine-day joint naval exercise in the Sea of Japan on Thursday. It is the largest joint naval drill between the two countries since 2012, according to Global Times.

The drills came ahead of a grand military parade on September 3 in Beijing to celebrate the 70th anniversary of the allied victory in World War Two.

China will send out guided missile destroyer Taizhou as well as the Hengyang Frigate.

The Taizhou Destroyer. Photo: 81.cn.

Beijing will also deploy its air force to build an airborne command centre together with the Russian army, said China News Service’s website.

China air force soldiers prepare for joint military drill with Russia. Photo: 81.cn.

All the aircraft China sent to the joint drill were made domestically, said CNS.

China sends domestically made aircraft to joint drill with Russia. Photo: 81.cn.

The drill, which will last until August 28, will include landing operations for the first time, according to Global Times.

Zhang Junshe, a researcher at the China Naval Research Institute told Global Times the drills have no specific target” and are not related to the September military parade.

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Vivienne Zeng

Vivienne Zeng is a journalist from China with three years' experience covering Hong Kong and mainland affairs. She has an MA in journalism from the University of Hong Kong. Her work has been featured on outlets such as Al Jazeera+ and MSNBC.