SIMBEX: India-Singapore naval drill in South China Sea

India had deployed its guided-missile destroyer INS Ranvijay and anti-submarine warfare corvette INS Kiltan as Singapore put the F-16 fighters in action including naval vessels.

India deploys guided-missile destroyer, long-range maritime patrol aircraft in South China Sea

India and Singapore have carried out a mega naval wargame in the southern fringes of the South China Sea over the last three days in reflection of their growing congruence of interests in the strategically key region.

The Indian Navy deployed its guided-missile destroyer INS Ranvijay, anti-submarine warfare corvette INS Kiltan and guided-missile corvette INS Kora and one P8I long-range maritime patrol aircraft for the 'SIMBEX' exercise from September 2-4.

Photo Courtesy:  Indian Navy


Singapore deploys F-16 fighters, missile corvette RSS Vigour

The Singapore Navy was represented by formidable class frigate RSS Steadfast, victory class missile corvette RSS Vigour, one Archer class submarine and one Fokker-50 maritime patrol aircraft.

Four F-16 fighter aircraft of the Republic of Singapore Air Force (RSAF) also participated in the exercise during the air defence drills.

It was the 28th edition of the Singapore-India Maritime Bilateral Exercise (SIMBEX).

Photo Courtesy: Indian Navy


SIMBEX: Indian Navy's longest uninterrupted bilateral maritime exercise

The military excercise initiated in 1994, SIMBEX is the Indian Navy's longest uninterrupted bilateral maritime exercise with any foreign navy.

"Sustaining the continuity of this significant engagement despite the challenges of the ongoing pandemic further underscores the strength of bilateral defence ties," Indian Navy Spokesperson Commander Vivek Madhwal said.

"Despite these constraints during the planning stages, both navies could achieve seamless and safe execution of several challenging evolutions including live weapon firing and advanced naval warfare serials, including anti-submarine, anti-air and anti-surface warfare drills," he said.

(Photo Courtesy: Indian Navy)


India-Singapore defence ties

Commander Madhwal said the scale and complexity of the drills is a "testimony" to the interoperability achieved between both Navies.

"This year's edition of SIMBEX is also a special occasion as it takes place during the ongoing celebrations of the 75th year of India's independence," he said.

"The success of SIMBEX-2021 is yet another demonstration of the mutual resolve on both sides to strengthen the bilateral partnership further in the years ahead," he added.

India-Singapore defence ties remain a very significant aspect of the overall engagement between the two countries.

Both navies have a representation in each other's Maritime Information Fusion Centres and have also recently signed an agreement on mutual submarine rescue support and coordination.

(Photo Courtesy: Indian Navy)


India-US naval excercise

Amid tensions in the South China Sea, US Navy's biggest warship USS Nimitz had earlier taken part in an exercise with the Indian Navy off the coast of Andaman & Nicobar island.

The USS Nimitz aircraft carrier came in from the South China Sea. 

The USS Nimitz was part of war games along with USS Theodore Roosevelt in the South China Sea where tensions were at boiling point between China and the United States.


'Support a free and open Indo-Pacific'

The USS Nimitz and USS Ronald Reagan had conducted dual carrier operations in the waterway to "support a free and open Indo-Pacific" last year  in order to "stand up for the right of all nations to fly, sail, and operate wherever international law allows," the US had said.

The Pentagon is especially "concerned" over Chinese military exercises in the South China Sea.


B-2 Spirit bombers in South China Sea

Amid the coronavirus pandemic in May last year, the United States conducted a military exercise airdropping troops as part of a mock drill to take over Andersen Air Force Base in Guam in the Pacific.

The drill was no run of the mill exercise as the United States wanted to showcase its military prowess in the region with China clearly the main force in the area. Troops practised how to seize back the airfield from an "invading" force.

Among the several aircraft on show were the B-2 Spirit bombers.

China has deployed bombers on several occasions across the South China Sea, the US military put its heaviest bomber in operation which reportedly costs $2 billion and is widely believed to the most expensive military plane ever built.


JDAM smart bombs

The Northrop B-2 Spirit stealth bomber has undertaken operations in several countries starting out in 1999 during the Kosovo war. It used its sophisticated GPS satellite-guided JDAM smart bombs for the first time in Kosovo which was a first for any Air Force anywhere in the world.

The B-2 Spirit bomber had dropped at least five JDAM missiles on the Chinese embassy killing several staffers apart from bombing several areas in Yugoslavia.


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