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China, Russia War Games Begin Live-Fire Drills

Russian and Chinese forces have begun live fire-drills Tuesday in eastern China's Shandong Peninsula, in the third phase of large-scale war games.

Nearly 10,000 troops from land, sea, and air forces of both nations are participating in the first-ever joint military exercise, dubbed "Peace Mission 2005."

Russian Defense Minister Sergei Ivanov is expected to arrive in China today to observe this latest phase. Chinese media report the exercise involves firing with live ammunition by warplanes and military vessels as part of an amphibious landing on the Shandong peninsula.

The eight-day joint maneuvers began in the Russian port city of Vladivostok Thursday.

The United States is not attending as an observer, but says it is closely monitoring the drills.

Some information for this report provided by AP and AFP.