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India joins Quad partners for Malabar wargames in Guam

Indian Naval Ships Shivalik and Kadmatt are participating in the multilateral maritime exercise Malabar 2021 (Images courtesy: Indian Navy)

While the world focuses on Kabul, the first phase of Exercise Malabar 2021, participated by the Navies from Quad partners India, Australia, Japan and the United States, has commenced in Guam, showcasing efforts and commitment to achieve a free, open and inclusive Indo-Pacific. The Exercise will see the four nations' forces conduct a range of maritime operations involving live firings and anti-submarine warfare operations.

The Malabar series of maritime exercises commenced in 1992 as a bilateral Indian Navy-US Navy exercise and has grown in stature over the years to include four prominent navies in the Pacific and Indian Ocean Region to counter China's rapid advances in the Indo-Pacific.  

Indian Naval Ships Shivalik and Kadmatt are participating in the multilateral maritime exercise as part of their ongoing deployment to nations in SouthEast Asia and the Pacific Ocean. The commencement of the sea phase of the exercise from August 26 would witness high-tempo exercises conducted between destroyers, frigates, corvettes, submarines, helicopters and Long Range Maritime Patrol aircrafts of the participating navies.

INS Shivalik and INS Kadmatt are multi-role Guided Missile Stealth Frigate and Anti-Submarine Corvette, respectively. Part of the Indian Navy's Eastern Fleet based at Visakhapatnam, Eastern Naval Command, the ships are equipped with a versatile array of weapons and sensors and can carry multi-role helicopters.

The Royal Australian Navy has sent Anzac class frigate HMAS Warramunga for the high-end military exercise off the coast of Guam in the Indo-Pacific.

"We regularly work with India, Japan and the United States to build our professional relationships and strengthen the foundations for an open, inclusive and resilient Indo-Pacific. Our forces' participation in Exercise Malabar 2021 will enhance the region's maritime interoperability and is a key cooperative activity between us," said Australia's Chief of Navy, Vice Admiral Michael Noonan.

Malabar Exercise 2021

This is the second consecutive year that Australia has been invited to participate in Exercise Malabar.

The Special Boarding Unit from Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force (JMSDF) will also be participating in the Exercise which will provide an opportunity for common-minded navies to enhance inter-operability, gain from best practices and develop a common understanding of procedures for maritime security operations.

Japan said Monday that its participation in Malabar 2021 will improve JMSDF's tactical capabilities and also strengthen the relationship with the Indian, Australian and the US Navy.

Guided-missile destroyer USS Barry, Military Sealift Command (MSC) fleet replenishment oiler USNS Yukon and replenishment vessel USNS Big Horn besides P-8A maritime patrol aircrafts are participating in the Exercise from the US side. 

Also Read: In a signal to China, Indian naval ships dock in Brunei ahead of QUAD manoeuvres in Guam