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China, Russia ready to hold joint naval drills with Iran: Navy commander

Navy Commander Rear Admiral Shahram Irani says Russia and China have expressed their readiness to hold joint naval maneuvers with Iran.

Speaking in an interview with Iranian Students’ News Agency (ISNA) on Sunday, he said Iran’s Navy makes decisions about holding maneuvers in the country each year.

“We will also hold drills this year. We have invited different countries to attend the drills but Russia and China have so far voiced their readiness,” Irani said.

He noted that different units of Iran’s Armed Forces take part in joint maneuvers with countries.

Russian Ambassador to Tehran Levan Dzhagaryan said in August that Iran, Russia and China will hold joint maritime exercises – dubbed CHIRU – in the Persian Gulf around late 2021 or early 2022, to ensure international shipping safety and combat piracy.

“In the end of this year or the beginning of the next year, the annual joint naval exercises, CHIRU, will be held in the Persian Gulf region. Russian, Iranian and Chinese warships are taking part in it. The main aim is to practice actions on ensuring international shipping safety, and combating sea pirates,” Dzhagaryan said in an interview with Sputnik.

Late in December 2019, Iran, Russia and China staged a four-day joint maritime exercise in the Indian Ocean and the Sea of Oman area.

The drills, dubbed the ‘Marine Security Belt’ exercise, covered 17,000 square kilometers and consisted of various tactical exercises such as target practicing and rescuing ships from assault and incidents such as fires.

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