Russia says its navy carries out joint patrols with China in Pacific

Russia's defense ministry says its navy has carried out joint patrols with the Chinese navy in the Pacific Ocean.

The ministry announced on Thursday that naval vessels from the two countries have conducted the joint patrols for a second time. It released footage of the operation.

The announcement said the operations were joined by Russian vessels in the frigate and corvette class.

It said crews from the two countries were also scheduled to test and confirm mutual communications and carry out artillery drills.

The ministry said the mission is designed to strengthen naval cooperation between Russia and China to uphold peace and stability in the Asia-Pacific region.

The Russian and Chinese navies held their first joint patrols in the Sea of Japan and the Western Pacific in October last year.

The Chinese navy also took part in Russia's large-scale military exercises held in its far east earlier this month.

The joint patrols come just before Russian President Vladimir Putin is expected to have talks with Chinese President Xi Jinping on Thursday.

The two leaders are attending a two-day summit of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization, which opens on that day in Uzbekistan.

The operations are thought to be aimed at demonstrating the two countries' military cooperation in a bid to keep the United States and other Western nations in check.