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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

U.S., Russian Soldiers Hold Joint Exercise

Russian and U.S. military officers are conducting a joint missile defense exercise in Russia this week, and a similar event will be held in the United States next year, Defense Minister Sergei Ivanov said Monday.

Ivanov, speaking at a government meeting chaired by President Vladimir Putin, said the exercise was "one of the key elements of military cooperation with the United States."

He said 75 U.S. military officers had arrived in Russia for the exercise, which started earlier this month and would continue until the end of the week.

The exercise involves computer simulation rather than firing actual weapons, Itar-Tass said.

"The goal of such an exercise is to create an efficient missile defense system on the territory of greater Europe that would protect all critical facilities from missile threats," Ivanov said. "No nation is capable of creating such a system alone. This work is being done together by the leadership of NATO and Russia."

Ivanov said the next round of missile defense exercises was set to take place in the United States in April 2006.