15 incredible photos of Russia’s latest military exercise in annexed Crimea

Following its massive International Army Games, Russia is staging a series of worrisome military exercises for neighboring Ukraine and other global powers.

The drills began early this week in southern Russia and Crimea, the peninsula that was annexed from Ukraine in 2014. With their cruise missiles, tanks, aircraft, and naval ships deployed to the contested area, Russia put on an impressive display of their military might.

Here are several photos from the military exercise:


A Russian navy ship and helicopters take part in a landing operation during military drills at the Black Sea coast, Crimea, Friday, September 9, 2016.

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Pavel Golovkin/AP

Cruise missiles from submarines were also reported to have been launched for the exercise.

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Pavel Golovkin/AP

The size of Russia’s navy in 2015 was estimated to be 172 ships.

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Pavel Golovkin/AP

Source: Contemporary Issues and Geography


Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu, center, the head of General Staff, Gen. Valery Gerasimov, left, and the head of the main directorate of combat training Lieutenant-General Ivan Buvaitsev also made appearances at the Black Sea coast in Crimea.

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Pavel Golovkin/AP

Paratroopers made jumps into the area of operations.

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Pavel Golovkin/AP

Russian helicopters and boats work in conjunction for a landing operation.

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Pavel Golovkin/AP

An aerial view of the operation in the Black Sea from a Russian helicopter.

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Pavel Golovkin/AP

The drills, which also stretched across southern Russia, consisted of 120,000 troops.

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Pavel Golovkin/AP

Source: AP


A tank debarks a ship for the landing operation.

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Pavel Golovkin/AP

A Russian official alleged that the drills never consisted of more than 12,500 troops at any given moment — in compliance with international treaties.

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Pavel Golovkin/AP

Source: AP


If the total number of troops used for the drills is accurate, it would be one of the largest exercises that Russia has held for several years.

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Pavel Golovkin/AP

Source: AP


Russia also deployed their S-400 anti-aircraft missile system for the drills.

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Pavel Golovkin/AP

Source: AP


Here, Russian Su-34 bombers fly in formation.

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Pavel Golovkin/AP

Russian jets fire their flares.

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Pavel Golovkin/AP

Russian paratroopers perform their descent.

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Pavel Golovkin/AP