The number of exercises that Western countries hold near Russian borders keeps growing, Western Military District Commander Colonel-General Andrei Kartapolov said on Wednesday.

“According to our information, about 50 combat training events have been held on the territory of Europe since June. Some 60,000 people took part in them, including US servicemen. Moreover, the number of military exercises near Russian borders has been constantly growing,” Kartapolov said in an interview with the Krasnaya Zvezda newspaper.

The official added that such maneuvers often involve personnel “not only from the NATO alliance, but also neutral states like Finland, Sweden, Moldova and even Ukraine.”

In late September, Poland is set to hold the Dragon exercise involving 17,000 personnel and 3,500 pieces of military hardware. At the moment, about 20,000 Swedish, French, Norwegian, Finnish, Estonian and Lithuanian servicemen are taking part in the three-week Aurora 17 exercise, Kartapolov said.

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