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China, Russia partner for largest-ever joint naval drill

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Chinese and Russian navies have partnered for the countries' largest joint naval drill in history, set to start Friday in the Sea of Japan.

Military analysts see the joint drill as yet another sign of the countries' growing friendship, post-Cold War days.

The "Joint Sea-2013" drills involved 18 surface ships, a submarine, three airplanes, five ship-launched helicopters and two command units, The Associated Press reported.

The drill takes place through July 12. It's aimed at giving the countries the chance to practice anti-submarine warfare and naval maneuvers at a close range.

The drills are the largest in scope that China's ever held with a foreign nation. The country has been actively building up its navy, AP reported.

"This is our strongest line-up ever in a joint naval drill," said Rear Admiral Yang Junfei, commander of China's contingent, AP said.

China's contribution to the joint drills: Four destroyers, two guided missile frigates and a support ship, AP reported.

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