The Russian Pacific Fleet has begun a series of drills in the Sea of Japan as part of Vostok-2010 in Russia’s Far East.

Pacific Fleet spokesman captain Roman Martov said ships were carrying out missions to ensure favourable operational conditions in the Primorye joint task force’s zone of control and conducting tactical drills, according to RIA Novosti.

Other ships participating in the naval drills include flagships of the Northern and Black Sea fleets, the Pyotr Veliky nuclear-powered missile cruiser and the Moskva missile cruiser.

The ongoing biennial Vostok-2010 military exercises, which will end on 8 July in Siberia, involves at least 20,000 troops, up to 70 warplanes and 30 warships.