India, US to hold joint anti-terror military exercise

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New Delhi, Sep 12 (IANS) India and US will be conducting the 12th edition of joint military exercise “Yudh Abhyas”, focussing on anti-insurgency and anti-terrorist operations, in the hills of Uttarakhand from September 14 to 27, an official statement said on Monday.

The exercise, to be held in Chaubattia in the hill state, is a series of one of the longest-running joint military training exercises and a major ongoing bilateral defence cooperation endeavour between India and US.

This will be the twelfth edition of the joint military exercise which started in 2004 under US Army Pacific partnership programme and is hosted alternately by both countries. This year’s edition is however the first after the Logistic Exchange Memorandum of Agreement (LEMOA) between India and US was signed.

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“Yudh Abhyas” 2016 will simulate a scenario where both nations are working together in a Counter Insurgency and Counter Terrorism environment in mountainous terrain under a UN charter, the statement said.

The two-week exercise will witness participation of about 225 personnel of the US Army and similar strength of the Indian Army.

“The exercise curriculum is progressively planned where the participants are initially made to get familiar with each other’s organisational structure, weapons, equipment and tactical drills. Subsequently, the training advances to joint tactical exercises wherein the battle drills of both the armies are coherently unleashed,” the statement said.

The training will culminate with a final validation exercise in which troops of both countries will jointly carry out an operation against terrorists in a fictitious but realistic setting.

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