If natural disasters often prompt countries to put their differences aside and work together, so does training for them.

That kind of cooperation was on display during a joint disaster relief exercise held by the United States and China in the southwest Chinese city of Kunming last week.

Around 200 soldiers trained for several days on a variety of scenarios, a rare instance of cooperation that stands in stark contrast to the otherwise often contentious relationship between the world’s two largest militaries.

“It’s an opportunity for young soldiers from the US Army and young soldiers from the People’s Liberation Army to kind of come together and understand each other and create bonds,” US Army Lt. Col. David Downing told CNN.

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