08/04/2014 02:02 am ET Updated Oct 03, 2014

Russia Conducts Military Exercises With More Than 100 Aircraft Near Ukraine

MOSCOW, Aug 4 (Reuters) - Russia is conducting new military exercises with more than 100 aircraft in the country's central and western districts, an air force spokesman was quoted as saying on Monday, a show of strength near the border with Ukraine.

Igor Klimov was quoted by Interfax news agency as saying it was the first session in a series to enhance the unity of the air force this year and did not mention Ukraine, where pro-Russian rebels are fighting Ukrainian government forces.

He said aircraft such as Su-27 and MiG-31 fighter jets, Russia's newest frontline bomber Su-34, and Mi-8, Mi-24 and Mi-28N helicopters would be used in the exercises and the aircraft would conduct missile practice.

The exercises were planned for Aug. 4-8.

Russia's Defense Ministry could not immediately be reached for comment. (Reporting by Polina Devitt and Tatiana Ustinova, writing by Elizabeth Piper, editing by Timothy Heritage)