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UK Navy chief in Delhi as joint exercise kicks off in Mumbai

UK Navy chief Admiral Tony Radakin with Admiral Karambir Singh, Chief of the Naval Staff, in New Delhi on Friday (Image courtesy: Indian Navy)

As India and the United Kingdom kicked off their maiden joint Tri-Service Exercise Konkan Shakti 2021 near Mumbai coast, UK Navy chief Admiral Tony Radakin interacted with Admiral Karambir Singh, Chief of the Naval Staff, in New Delhi on Friday to further solidify the growing defence partnership between both the countries.

Radakin was earlier this month appointed as UK's Chief of the Defence Staff, a post he will take up on November 30.

Amongst other naval bilateral cooperation issues, the naval chiefs of India and the United Kingdom emphasised on collaborative mechanisms towards ensuring peace and security in the region.

During his three-day visit, Radakin is also scheduled to visit Indian Navy's Western Naval Command wherein he would interact with the top leadership and also embark on HMS Queen Elizabeth, Flagship of the UK's Carrier Strike Group (CSG).

Sharing a modern partnership bound by strong ties, the bilateral relationship between India and UK was upgraded to a 'Strategic Partnership' in 2004 and further strengthened through reciprocal visits by the Prime Ministers.

Subsequently, during the virtual summit between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Boris Johnson on May 4, a 'Roadmap 2030' was adopted towards elevating the bilateral ties to a 'Comprehensive Strategic Partnership'.

The Indian Navy cooperates with the Royal Navy on numerous issues, which include operational interactions such as the Konkan and Maritime Partnership Exercise, training exchanges, exchange of White Shipping Information and Subject Matter Experts in various fields, all of which are coordinated through the medium of Executive Steering Group (ESG) meetings conducted annually. In addition, warships from both Navies regularly make port calls at each other's ports.

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