(KYIV) - Ukraine has begun joint military exercises with the United States and other NATO countries amid increased activity of the Western military alliance near Russia’s borders.
Ukraine’s Defense Ministry said in a statement on Monday that the annual Rapid Trident exercises involve some 6,000 soldiers from 15 countries.
“The main goal is to prepare for joint actions as part of a multinational force during coalition operations,” the statement read.
A ministry spokesman confirmed that 4,000 Ukrainian troops and 2,000 foreigners would participate in the drills, due to run until October.
Brigadier General Vladyslav Klochkov said the drills were “an important step towards Ukraine's European integration.”
“The Ukrainian military, which has been holding back Russian aggression for eight years, will share its unique combat experience with its international colleagues.”