Chief of Naval Staff, Indian Navy, Admiral Karambir Singh and Chief of Naval Operations (CNO), U.S. Navy, Admiral Michael Gilday embarked on the aircraft carrier USS Carl Vinson during the ongoing second phase of Malabar exercise in the Bay of Bengal. This is the 25th edition of the naval exercise, which began as a bilateral exercise between India and the U.S. in 1992.
“This visit to Carl Vinson during Malabar was an important opportunity to see first-hand the integration between our two navies at-sea,” Adm Gilday said in a statement issued by the U.S. Navy. “By our navies continuing to exercise together, as we are doing right now alongside Japanese and Australian naval forces, there is no doubt our partnership will only continue to grow. Cooperation, when applied with naval power, promotes freedom and peace, and prevents coercion, intimidation and aggression.”
The U.S. Navy said a team of 12 senior Indian Navy officers was hosted aboard the carrier.
“Exercise Malabar is a showcase example of defense collaboration between our four partnering countries, demonstrating what we can accomplish when we work together to advance our common interests in the Indo-Pacific,” she said Chargé d’Affaires Patricia Lacina, who was also part of the visit.
In 2015, Japan joined Malabar as a permanent member, while Australia was included in 2020.
While Phase-I of Malabar was held in August and hosted by the U.S. Navy near Guam, Phase-II is being held from October 12-15 in the Bay of Bengal off Visakhapatnam.
The Navy has stated that the second phase would build upon the synergy, coordination and inter-operability developed during the first phase of the exercise and would focus on “advanced surface and anti-submarine warfare exercises, seamanship evolutions and weapon firings.”
The Indian Navy has deployed two frontline warships, a P8I long-range maritime patrol aircraft and a Submarine for the exercise.