Joint military drills begin in Ukraine as Russian war games loom reports: “Ukraine on Monday launched joint military exercises with the United States and a host of other NATO countries as its bitter rival Russia gears up for its own war games on the EU border.

The annual Rapid Trident military exercises, taking place in the western Ukrainian city of Yavoriv until September 23, involve an ‘unprecedented’ number of 2,500 soldiers from 15 countries, the Ukrainian military said in a statement.

‘Today, your support is very important for us. The experience of our colleagues is extremely valuable for the Ukrainian army,’ Colonel Sergei Litvinov, the exercises co-director on the Ukrainian side, said.

The Ukraine drills began days ahead of Moscow’s massive military exercise ‘Zapad 2017’ (‘West’) in neighbouring Russia and Belarus.

The event has caused alarm in the Baltic states and Poland and drawn criticism from the United States and NATO for a lack of transparency…”

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