India, Indonesia to hold maritime exercise

New Delhi, Oct 3 (IANS) In a bid to boost naval ties, India and Indonesia will be holding the first Indonesia Bilateral Maritime Exercise from October 17-18 in the Andaman Sea.

The bilateral exercise will be embedded in the expanded version of the coordinated patrol (CORPAT) which will commence on October 3 and continue till October 21.

“The importance of this bilateral cooperation has increased significantly with the scheduling of the first Bilateral Maritime Exercise along with the 26th edition of the CORPAT being held this year.

“The Bilateral Maritime Exercise and the CORPAT would see participation by one warship and one maritime patrol aircraft from both sides,” an official statement said.

INS Saryu, an indigenously-built Naval Offshore Patrol Vessel (NOPV) based at the Andaman and Nicobar Command, along with a Dornier Maritime Patrol Aircraft, will participate in the 26th edition of the coordinated patrol.

INS Saryu entered Port Belawan in Indonesia on October 1, and sailed out on Saturday for the coordinated patrol with the Indonesian Navy, the statement said.

“Defence relations between India and Indonesia have been growing steadily with regular joint activities and exchange of personnel between the armed forces of the two countries.

“Under the broad ambit of this strategic partnership, the two navies have been carrying out coordinated patrolling along the International Maritime Boundary Line (IMBL) twice a year since 2002, with the aim of keeping this vital part of the Indian Ocean Region safe and secure for commercial shipping and international trade,” it said.

“The coordinated patrol has strengthened understanding and interoperability between the navies, instituting measures to prosecute vessels engaged in unlawful activities and conducting Search and Rescue as well as pollution control.”

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