Slavic Brotherhood Joint Drills kicked off yesterday, 8 June, and will continue until 19 June. The joint Russian-Belarusian-Serbian drills will take place in Russia's Southern Military District at the base of the Guards Mountain Air Assault Division of the Russian Airborne Troops in Novorossisk.
"The active phase of the combat training event will be held at the Raevsky training ground near Novorossisk from June 16 to 18. Servicemen from the Russian Federation, the Republic of Belarus, and the Republic of Serbia will hold unit cohesion training for subsequently practicing joint operations as part of a multinational tactical group" said the Russian Ministry of Defence in a statement on Tuesday.
The Ministry added that the drills will bring together about 100 staff members of a Serbian special forces brigade, 350 troops of the Vitebsk Guards airborne unit of the Belarusian special operations forces with 60 combat vehicles, and more than 500 servicemen of the Guards Kuban Cossack air assault regiment of the NovorossiskGuards Mountain Air Assault Division, the statement says.
The Belarusian Ministry of Defence said in a statement that stages of the exercise include the air landing of personnel and of cargo, overcoming water obstacles, parachute-free landing, and live-fire.
"During the maneuvers, the issues of joint actions of units of the armed forces of Belarus, Russia, and Serbia in the implementation of tasks to combat terrorism will be worked out," added the Ministry of Defence of Belarus in a statement.
The Slavic Brotherhood Joint Drills, take place annually in Russia, Serbia, and Belarus, consecutively. The drills take place every year since there start: 2015 – Russia, 2016 – Serbia, 2017 – Belarus, 2018 – Russia, 2019 – Serbia, 2020 – Belarus).
Last year, Slavic Brotherhood took place last year on the Brestsky training ground in Belarus in September. In 2020, for the first time since their start in 2015, Serbia dropped out of the drills which took place in September.
The Serbian government had declared freezing all joint international military exercises for six months under "great and undeserved pressure from the European Union."
"We are asked, at the cost of leaving our European future... to abandon the planned military exercises with Belarus," said Serbia's Defence Minister Aleksandar Vulin in September 2020.