Indian Ships Enter US to Participate in Exercise Malabar 2018
Exercise Malabar, which started as a bilateral exercise between the US Navy and the Indian Navy in 1992, has evolved over the years.
Ships from India, Japan, and United States are going to participate in the joint Naval exercise Malabar 2018 from 7th to 16th June off the coast of Guam in the United States. Indian Ships, Kamorta, Sahyadri, and Shakti has arrived at Guam on 7th June to participate in the 22nd edition of Exercise Malabar under the command of Rear Admiral Dinesh K Tripathi, Flag Officer Commanding, Eastern Fleet who is currently on an overseas deployment in South East Asia and the Western Pacific.
Exercise Malabar started as a bilateral exercise between the US Navy and the Indian Navy in 1992. The exercise has evolved over the years with the participation of the Japanese Maritime Self-Defense Force (JMSDF) from 2007. In the past 26 years, the Maritime Exercise has grown in scope and complexity and aims at increasing the level of mutual understanding, interoperability and sharing of the best practices between the three navies. In the year 2017 Exercise Malabar was held in July off Chennai and Visakhapatnam in India. It is for the first time that the exercise is being conducted off Guam, a major US Naval Base in the Western Pacific. The US has recently named their Hawaii based Pacific Command as the US-Indo Pacific Command.
The joint exercise will feature both shore and at sea training of the Navy. The shore exercise will concentrate on the training that will include subject matter expert and professional exchanges on carrier strike group operations, maritime patrol and reconnaissance operations, surface and anti-submarine warfare, medical operations, helicopter operations, damage control and the visit, board, search and seizure (VBSS) operations.
The scope of the Malabar '18, will thereby help generating the professional interactions during the Harbour Phase in Guam from 7th to 10th June during onshore training and again in the Sea Phase from 11th to 16th June will includes a wide range of activities at sea which include Anti-Submarine Warfare (ASW), Surface Warfare, Aircraft Carrier operations, Air Defence, Visit Board Search and Seizure (VBSS).
In Malabar '18, Indian Navy is participating with two indigenously built ships, the multipurpose INS Sahyadri and Anti-Submarine Warfare expert INS Kamorta as also by Fleet Tanker INS Shakti and Long Range Maritime Patrol Aircraft P8I. The US Navy is represented by the USS Ronald Reagan, Nimitz-class aircraft carrier, USS Antietam and USS Chancellorsville, USS Mustin, USS Benfold and two Arleigh Burke-class destroyers. While the Japanese Navy would be represented by the Hyuga class helicopter carrier JS Ise, Takanami class destroyer JS Suzunami, Akizuki class destroyer JS Fuyuzuki. Japanese Maritime Patrol Aircraft, P1, and a submarine.
Indian, the US and Japanese maritime forces have a mutual understanding and knowledge of a shared working at sea. Each iteration of this exercise helps to advance the level of understanding between the nations' sailors as members of Indo-Pacific nations. In addition to the U.S. Navy forces, three ships from the Indian Navy and three ships from the Japan Maritime Self Defense Force will participate in the exercise.