As Pravda.Ru reported, the Caucasus 2016 exercises have been the biggest ones since Crimea joined Russia. 'Representatives of the NATO countries were invited, but didn't come, - a source said, - Moreover, we didn't get any intelligible answer on the reasons of refusal either from military attaches, or any other channels'.
Such state of affairs puts the Russian Defence Ministry in a difficult situation, as in response to a gesture of goodwill and attempts to act as transparently as possible, it faces veiled unwillingness to cooperate. Some Western mass media tried to represent ordinary military drills in the Southern military district as a training to invade Ukraine. However, no representative of the Western countries visited the Caucasus 2016. There were observers from China, Vietnam, Mongolia, Venezuela, the CIS countries and various African states.
Vladimir Komoyedov, Head of the State Duma Committee on Defence and former Commander of the Black Sea fleet, believes that the NATO has just seized the opportunity to accuse Russia of aggression, although the Russian military made everything possible so that no one doubts about defencive legend of the drills.
Russian President Vladimir Putin is confident that the conflict between Israel and the Palestinian Authority directly threatens Russia's security