NATO and its Allies are to commence large-scale exercises in the Mediterranean Sea on October 19, 2015. A total of 36,000 soldiers, 230 armored vehicles 140 aircrafts and 60 ships are expected to be involved into the large maneuvers that will last up to 5 weeks, Reuters news agency reports.

According to Adam Thomson, the UK ambassador to NATO, the Alliance needs a strategy to protect its southern borders due to instability in the countries from Iraq to North Africa. Moreover, NATO members have to agree on 'a joint long-term strategy with regard to Russia’ and prepare to face the numerous threats posed by this state. 

At the same time, the Alliance reported that the exercises had been planned long before the Russian aviation launched airstrikes in Syria.