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India, Singapore conduct naval drill in South China Sea

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NEW DELHI (PTI): The navies of India and Singapore conducted their bilateral naval drill in the South China Sea on Sunday, the Navy said.

The bilateral naval drill will be conducted till May 22.

Indian Navy ships Kolkata and Shakti took part in the bilateral naval exercise with Singapore, along with long range maritime patrol aircraft Poseidon-8I (P8I).

The Singapore side is to be represented by RSN ships Steadfast and Valiant, maritime patrol aircraft Fokker-50 (F-50) and F-16 fighter aircraft.

On successful completion of IMDEX 19, a biennial maritime defence show, INS Kolkata and INS Shakti are continuing their stay at Singapore to participate in the annual SIMBEX-2019 scheduled from May 16 to 22, the Navy said in a statement.

The harbour phase of SIMBEX-19 was conducted from May 16 to 18 that included various planning conferences, simulator based warfare training, war-gaming, courtesy calls to dignitaries of RSN Navy, sporting events and deck reception on board Kolkata.

"The sea phase of SIMBEX 19, scheduled to be conducted in the South China Sea from May 19-22, will include various maritime combat exercises such as firing on aerial, surface targets, advanced aerial tracking, coordinated targeting exercises and tactical exercises on surface, air scenarios," the Navy said.

The South China Sea waters, which are claimed by many littoral states, have been witnessing muscling in of the Chinese navy.

The three armed forces of India and Singapore share robust military ties.

Since its inception in 1993, SIMBEX has grown in tactical and operational complexity.

The annual bilateral exercise saw its progression from traditional anti-submarine exercises to more complex maritime exercises such as advanced air defence operations, anti-air, surface practice firings, tactical exercises, the Navy said.

For SIMBEX 19, the Indian Navy has deployed its finest assets with an aim to strengthen mutual trust, enhance inter-operability and build greater synergy to address common maritime concerns among both the navies, the Navy added.

SIMBEX 19 would also conclude the two-month long deployment of INS ships Kolkata and Shakti to South and East China seas aimed at extending the bridges of friendship through enhanced cultural, economic and maritime interactions with countries of east and southeast Asia.

"Indian Navy ships participation in International Fleet Review (IFR) at Qingdao, China as part of the PLA (Navy) 70th anniversary celebrations and ADMM-plus MS FTX also reflects the government of India's 'Act East' policy and the Indian Navy's efforts to unite nations through the oceans," the Navy said.


India  Singapore  Drill  Navy  Military  

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