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Iranian soldiers take part in "National Persian Gulf Day" in the Strait of Hormuz in April 2019. Photo: Atta Kenare/AFP via Getty Images

China, Russia and Iran announced they will hold joint naval drills in the Gulf of Oman from Dec. 27 to 30, AFP reports.

Why it matters: The drills come after the U.S. withdrew from a key international nuclear deal with Iran — and as it faces down geopolitical threats from both Russia and China, especially after the end of a key Cold War missile treaty.

What they're saying: A senior Iranian armed forces spokesman said the drills would "stabilize security" and increase "international commerce security in the region."

  • Chinese defense ministry spokesman Wu Qian added that the naval drills would "deepen exchange and cooperation between the navies of the three countries."

Worth noting: The Gulf of Oman is only a short distance away from the Strait of Hormuz, which has been a site of contention over the passage of oil tankers between Iran and some Western nations.

Go deeper: Security agencies warn Russia, China, Iran aim to interfere in 2020 election

Go deeper

3 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Rahm Emanuel floated for Transportation secretary

Rahm Emanuel. Photo: Joshua Lott for The Washington Post via Getty Images

President-elect Biden is strongly considering Rahm Emanuel to run the Department of Transportation, weighing the former Chicago mayor’s experience on infrastructure spending against concerns from progressives over his policing record.

Why it matters: The DOT could effectively become the new Commerce Department, as infrastructure spending, smart cities construction and the rollout of drone-delivery programs take on increasing economic weight.

3 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Biden turns to experienced hands for White House economic team

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Joe Biden plans to announce Cecilia Rouse and Brian Deese as part of his economic team and Neera Tanden to head the Office of Management and Budget, sources tell Axios.

Why it matters: These are experienced hands. Unveiling a diverse group of advisers also may draw attention away from a selection of Deese to run the National Economic Council. Some progressives have criticized his work at BlackRock, the world's largest asset management firm.

Biden taps former Obama communications director for press secretary

Photo: Mark Makela/Getty Images

Jen Psaki, who previously served as Obama's communications director, will serve as President-elect Joe Biden's press secretary, the transition team announced Sunday.

The big picture: All of the top aides in Biden's communication staff will be women, per the Washington Post, which first reported Psaki's appointment.