BEIJING (AP) -- The navies of China and Russia plan to hold joint drills in the Mediterranean Sea for the first time in mid-May.
China's Defense Ministry says the "Joint Sea 2015" exercises will feature nine surface ships, including three from China that are currently taking part in anti-piracy patrols off the coast of Somalia. It says the drills involve rescue, resupply and other missions, including live-firing, far from home ports.
The exercises show China's continued engagement with Russia at a time when Moscow has been shunned by much of the international community over its support for separatist rebels in Ukraine.
Chinese President Xi Jinping plans to attend commemorations of the 70th anniversary of the end of World War II in Moscow on May 9.