MOSCOW (AP) — Russian President Vladimir Putin is attending military maneuvers that have worried his country’s neighbors.
Putin, accompanied by Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu, attended the Zapad (West) 2017 drills on Monday at the Luzhsky range in western Russia, just over 100 kilometers (about 60 miles) east of Estonia’s border.
Russian and Belarusian troops are participating in the exercises that started last week.
Some nervous NATO members, including the Baltic states and Poland, have criticized an alleged lack of transparency about the war games and questioned Moscow’s intentions.
Russia and Belarus say the exercises, which run until Wednesday, involve 5,500 Russian and 7,200 Belarusian troops. Some NATO countries have estimated that up to 100,000 troops could be involved.
Moscow has rejected the claim and insists the maneuvers don’t threaten anyone.