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MALABAR Exercise: Enhancing Quad nations’ defence cooperation in Indo-Pacific

September 30, 2023 12:04 PM IST

Naval exercise | Defence News . | Indo Pacific | Malabar Naval Exercise | Quad

India, Japan, the USA, and Australia have commenced their first ‘Malabar Naval Exercise’ off Australia. The exercise started on August 11 and will continue until August 22. It will witness the participation of the Quad navies (India, Australia, Japan, USA) in the mega-international event.

The Indian Navy shared visuals of the exercise on Friday (August 11) and said, “India, USA, Japan, and Australia multilateral naval exercise will witness high-intensity operations in all three domains of warfare.”

India’s indigenous frontline warships INS Sahyadri and INS Kolkata are participating in the exercise along with ships and aircraft from the US Navy (USN), the Japan Maritime Self Defence Force (JMSDF), and the Royal Australian Navy (RAN).

Details of the exercise

Malabar 2023 is scheduled to be conducted in two phases. The Harbour Phase involves wide-ranging activities such as cross-deck visits, professional exchanges, sports fixtures, and several interactions for the planning and conduct of the Sea Phase. The Sea Phase will include various complex and high intensity exercises in all three domains of warfare, encompassing anti-surface, anti-air, and anti-submarine exercises, including live weapon firing drills.

Shifting geopolitical dynamics and evolving security challenges

The exercise provides an opportunity for the Indian Navy to enhance and demonstrate interoperability and also gain from the best practices in maritime security operations from its partner nations.

India has been increasingly proactive in bolstering its naval capabilities and forging strategic partnerships to ensure stability and security in the region. One of the key steps in this direction is the Malabar Exercise, a multinational naval drill that underscores India’s commitment to safeguard the Indo-Pacific while cooperating closely with QUAD nations.

During a press conference on the exercise, Vice Admiral Karl Thomas, Commander of the U.S. Navy’s Seventh Fleet, said, “The deterrence that our four nations provide as we operate together as a Quad is a foundation for all the other nations operating in this region.”

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