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MOSCOW - General Valery Gerasimov, the chief of Russia's general staff, on Thursday used a meeting with General Petr Pavel, the chairman of the NATO military committee, to reassure him about upcoming Russian war games, the Interfax news agency reported.
The Zapad-2017 war games this month have stirred unease in some countries because Russian troops and military hardware will be training inside Belarus, a Russian ally which borders Ukraine as well as NATO member states Poland, Latvia and Lithuania.
Interfax said Gerasimov, during a meeting in Azerbaijan, had told Pavel that the war games were purely defensive in nature, not aimed at any third countries, and designed to help secure the security of Belarus.
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