Xinhua recently reported that Yang Yujun, the spokesperson of the Chinese Ministry of Defense, announced in a press conference that the Chinese Navy and the Russian Navy will have a joint military exercise in the South China Sea region in September. Yang emphasized that this is just a “routine exercise” agreed to previously and is to reinforce the comprehensive strategic partnership between the two countries. He also emphasized that this exercise is not directed against any third party. However, observers suggested that, given the results of the recent South China Sea Arbitration case decided on July 12, this plan further strengthens the cooperation between China and Russia against the allied front that the United States is leading. The China-Russia joint naval exercises started in 2012. Last year there were two sessions – one in the Japanese Sea and the other in the Mediterranean Sea.
Source: Xinhua, July 29, 2016