The Russian Defense Minister signed a road map to establish closer military relations with China, pointing out that US strategic bombers are flying more and more frequently near the border between the two countries.
The Russian Defense Ministry stated that during the video call, Defense Minister Shoigu and Chinese Defense Minister Wei Fenghe “expressed a common interest in strengthening Russia-China strategic military exercises and joint patrols.”
“China and Russia have been strategic partners for many years,” Shoigu said. “Today, as geopolitical turmoil and the possibility of conflicts continue to increase around the world, our interactive development is particularly important.”
Shoigu pointed out that US strategic bombers are flying more and more densely near the Russian border, and there have been 30 such missions in the past month alone.
Shoigu said: “This month, during the US Global Thunder strategic power exercise, 10 strategic bombers practiced the use of nuclear weapons against Russia almost simultaneously from the west and east,” adding that they were close to 20 kilometers (12 miles). . ) To the Russian border.
He also pointed out that the number of U.S. bombers flying over the sea of Okhotsk has increased, where they practiced reaching the cruise missile launch site, saying that this poses a threat to both Russia and China.
“Under such an environment, Russia-China coordination has become a stabilizing factor in global affairs,” Shoigu said.
Wei praised Russia for successfully countering what he called American pressure and military threats.
Shoygu and Wei Jingsheng welcomed a series of exercises involving Russian and Chinese fighter planes and naval vessels, and signed a military cooperation plan for 2021-2025.
On Friday, two Russian Tu-95MS strategic bombers and two Chinese H-6K strategic bombers conducted joint patrols over the Sea of Japan and the East China Sea, prompting South Korea to dispatch fighter jets urgently.
The bomber patrol was conducted after Russian and Chinese warships and aircraft conducted joint naval exercises in the Sea of Japan last month.
In August, Shoygu visited China to participate in a joint military exercise. This was the first time that the Russian military participated in an exercise on Chinese territory.
This is the latest in a series of military exercises in recent years and aims to emphasize the increasingly close military relationship between Moscow and Beijing.
Russian President Vladimir Putin and Chinese leader Xi Jinping have established a strong personal relationship to strengthen the “strategic partnership” between former Communist opponents, as they both face tensions with the West.
Russia has been seeking to expand its relations with China, as relations between Russia and the United States and its allies fell to post-Cold War lows due to Moscow’s annexation of the Crimea Peninsula of Ukraine in 2014, accusations of Russian hacking, election interference and other disputes.
Although Russia and China rejected the possibility of a military alliance in the past, Putin said last year that this possibility could not be ruled out. He also pointed out that Russia has always shared highly sensitive military technology with China, which has helped significantly enhance its defense capabilities.