Russia and Belarus ready troops for large exercise near NATO’s eastern borders,

Russia and Belarus are gearing up for large-scale military exercises near NATO’s eastern flank, which a Belarusian military official on Thursday said will involve nearly 13,000 troops.

“About 12,800 troops will participate in the drills on the territory of the Republic of Belarus, including 2,500 Russian personnel and up to 50 Kazakh servicemen,” Belarus Deputy Defense Minister Viktor Gulevich said, as quoted by Russia’s Tass official news agency.

Every four years, Russia and Belarus hold the Zapad exercise, which has a history of unnerving U.S. and NATO military officials concerned that Moscow could use the drill as a means for moving larger than announced numbers of forces near allied borders. Läs artikel