MOSCOW, Aug. 11 (Xinhua) -- Battalion tactical drills kicked off in five regions of Russia's Siberia and the Far East, a military official said Monday.
"Over 2,000 personnel and about 500 pieces of the armor, including over 30 Ka-52, Mi-24, Mi-8 military helicopters and up to 20 Su-25 aircraft, are involved in the drills," the Itar-Tass news agency quoted military spokesman Alexander Gordeyev as saying.
The drills started in the republic of Buryatia and Transbaikal military district in East Siberia, as well as the Primorye Territory, Amur and Sakhalin regions in the Russian Far East.
The maneuvers, which will be over at the weekend, include a two-day gathering for commanders of military units and formations to study new forms and methods for battalion forces to conduct combat operations against illegal armed formations.
The latest electronic warfare stations and drones will be used during the drills, according to the spokesman.
Moreover, about 3,000 paratroopers will be airdropped in two districts of Russia's northwestern Pskov region as part of command and staff exercises of the 76th Guards Air Assault Division starting on Monday, according to a spokeswoman of Russian Airborne Troops.
It is the first time for mass landing of paratroopers in an unknown terrain to take part in military drills of this level, according to the Itar-Tass.
The maneuvers will involve over 30 aircraft and helicopters, including Su-34 fighter-bombers, Ka-52, Mi-28, Mi-24 and Mi-8 helicopters. The active phase of the exercise is scheduled for Aug. 14-15.
Russia last Monday started a week-long military drill involving bombers and fighter jets for the first time in three military districts. U.S. Vice President Joe Biden and Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko on Wednesday expressed concerns over an alleged ongoing Russian military buildup on Ukraine's border.