Zapad Exercise

By : Neha Dhyani

Updated : May 6, 2022, 10:57

The Military Exercise Zapad 2021 was a two-week military program organised by Russia at Nizhny. The Indian Army contingent also participated in the Zapad Exercise. The exercise is conducted on a theatre level, and the primary motive of this exercise is to fight against terrorists. Several European and South Asian countries, including India, were a part of the Zapad Exercise.

The drill took place in Nizhniy, Russia, from 3rd September to 16, 2021. Zapad means west.

Zapad Exercise - Countries Participating

Several countries are participating in the Zapad Exercise. Some countries will participate in the military exercise while others will be observers. Listed below are the participating countries and the observers.

Participating Countries

  • Armenia
  • Belarus
  • India
  • Kazakhstan
  • Kyrgyzstan
  • Mongolia
  • Russia
  • Serbia
  • Tajikistan

Observing Countries

  • Bangladesh
  • China
  • Malaysia
  • Myanmar
  • Pakistan
  • Sri Lanka
  • Uzbekistan
  • Vietnam

These countries were either from the Eurasia region or the South Asian Region. The primary aim of conducting the Zapad Exercise was to bring about military cooperation among the nations and strengthen the ties and mutual relationships among these countries.

Key Points about the Zapad Exercise

  • ZAPAD 2021 is one of the Russian Armed Forces' theatre-level exercises, and it will primarily focus on counter-terrorism operations as well as enhancing anti-terror cooperation
  • In addition, 17 countries from Eurasia and South Asia will take part in the drill
  • An all-arms joint task force will be present in the NAGA Battalion group participating in the exercise
  • While planning and executing the exercise, the goal is to strengthen military and strategic connections among the participating nations

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India at the Zapad Exercise

  • The members of the Indian army will go through some rigorous training that will involve everything that is usually a part of the operation that is carried on by military personnel
  • A battalion of 200 army folks from the Sikh Li infantry will be a part of this peace exercise organised in Russia
  • India also took part in the exercise TSENTR 2019, which is part of the Russian Armed Forces' annual training cycle and is part of a yearly series of large-scale exercises
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Significance of the Zapad Exercise

The Russian General Staff uses annual strategic exercises like Zapad to develop further operational concepts, Russian test military and civilian integration, and experiment with force organisation, reserve mobilisation, and logistics aspects. Zapad has become more routine over time, but it remains a vital display of military might to maintain coercive credibility with Washington.

Zapad Exercise is intended to depict the potential costs and escalation risks of a regional or large-scale conflict with NATO, notwithstanding the Russian military's perception of its relative inferiority in such a conflict. The exercise this year will also demonstrate Russia's ability to defend its interests in Belarus and deploy significant military force on its soil.

The Zapad Exercise is a carefully chalked out military exercise where around nine nations are participating, and some are invited as observers. The exercise is relevant as it is conducted to bring about a sync in the training of all the participating nations, and it will also increase the mutual understanding among countries.

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FAQs on Zapad Exercise

Q.1. What were the dates of the Zapad Exercise 2021?

The dates of the Zapad Exercise are from 3rd September to 16th September 2021.

Q.2. How many countries will be participating in the Zapad Exercise?

Seventeen countries are invited to participate in the Zapad Exercise, out of which eight countries are observers.

Q.3. Countries from which areas are selected for the Zapad Exercise?

Countries from Eurasia and South Asia are selected for the Zapad Exercise.

Q.4. What is the primary objective of the Zapad Exercise?

The primary objective of the Zapad Exercise is to enhance the military ties between nations that are participating.

Q.5. Which country is organising the Zapad Exercise?

Russia is organising the Zapad Exercise.