U.S. Naval Institute’s online news and analysis portal USNI News claims that China sent uninvited spy ship to Russia’s Vostok 2018 military drill. Publication says, “At Moscow’s invitation, Beijing sent People’s Liberation Army soldiers, helicopters, tanks – and one uninvited Chinese surveillance ship.”
A PLA Navy Dongdiao-class auxiliary general intelligence (AGI) shadowed Russian Navy assets for the length of the at-sea portion of the exercise while Chinese and Mongolian troops exercised ashore, a U.S. official confirmed to USNI News.
The PLA sent about 3,500 troops for the ground portion, but it was unclear if the PLA Navy was invited to send warships to drill with the Russians.