Chinese State Councilor and Defense Minister General Wei Fenghe (R) and Russian Defense Minister General Sergei Shoigu pose for a group photo during the live-fire drill of the China-Russia joint exercise ZAPAD/INTERACTION-2021 (Xibu Unity-2021) on August 13, 2021.
By Lyu Desheng and Zhang Xiaoyu
YINCHUAN, Aug. 13 -- The China-Russia joint exercise ZAPAD/INTERACTION-2021 (Xibu Unity-2021) wrapped up at the combined-arms tactical training base of the PLA Army in Qingtongxia City of West China's Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region on Friday. General Wei Fenghe, Chinese State Councilor and Defense Minister, observed the live-fire drill, held a bilateral talk and witnessed the signing of cooperation paper with Russian Defense Minister General Sergei Shoigu .
The live-fire drill kicked off at about 10:20 in the morning of August 13 with more than 10 thousand troops from both Chinese and Russian sides, together with multiple types of aircraft, artilleries and armored vehicles involved. It was conducted in four stages including joint confrontation against mock enemy, comprehensive destruction of mock enemy's defense system, high-speed three-dimensional attack, and thorough suppression, pursuit and elimination of mock enemy.
After the drill, General Wei Fenghe held a talk with General Sergei Shoigu. Wei Fenghe called the joint exercise conducted against the background of the COVID-19 pandemic a symbol of the mutual support and high-level relations between the two militaries. General Sergei Shoigu stated that the Russian side is willing to strengthen strategic communication with China, deepen cooperation in areas such as counter-terrorism, and jointly make active efforts to maintain regional peace and stability.
The closing ceremony of the joint exercise ZAPAD/INTERACTION-2021 (Xibu Unity-2021) was held in the afternoon of August 13. The China-Russia joint exercise command awarded medals and certificates to outstanding participating members from both sides.