The Russian Defense Ministry said in a statement on Thursday that it will partake in the AMAN-2021 anti-piracy drills that are set to be held in waters near the Pakistani city of Karachi in February 2021, Russia’s TASS news agency reported.
The 30-member event will also be joined by the United States, which is NATO’s biggest military, British, Turkish, and Japanese vessels as well as China’s Navy, another rather uncommon attendee.
Russia and the alliance are at loggerheads as Moscow blames the latter for military buildup in its backyard.
NATO, meanwhile, accuses Russia of destabilizing eastern Ukraine.
Ties and cooperation between the two sides fell apart altogether in 2014 after Ukraine’s Crimea, a former Russian territory, voted to rejoin Russia.
The last time Russian and NATO vessels took part in drills together was at the NATO-led Bold Monarch exercises in 2011 off the coast of Spain, TASS noted.