A trilateral naval exercise involving India, Singapore and Thailand recently took place in the Andaman Sea. The two-day long exercise, SITMEX-2020, was scheduled in a "non-contact, at sea only format", in wake of the COVID-19 restrictions.
• Indian Prime Minister, during his keynote address at Shangri-La Dialogue in June 2018, announced the conduct of a trilateral naval exercise between India, Singapore, and Thailand.
• The maiden edition of the exercise was conducted off Andaman and Nicobar Islands in September 2019 with the harbour phase conducted at Port Blair and a sea phase in the Andaman Sea spanning over five days.
The SITMEX series of exercises are conducted to enhance mutual inter-operability and imbibing best practices between IN, Republic of Singapore Navy (RSN) and Royal Thai Navy (RTN).
The 2020 edition of the exercise was hosted by RSN.
The Indian Navy is represented by two indigenous warships -- an ASW corvette, INS Kamorta, and a guided Missile corvette, INS Karmuk. The force would also include the ships' integral air assets.
The primary aim of the exercise was to further consolidate interoperability between the three navies and also enhance understanding, sharing best practices and procedures for multi-faceted maritime operations.
This edition of the exercise involved a war-at-sea exercise, naval manoeuvres, weapon firing on the surface and aerial targets, seamanship evolutions, and coordinated navigation operations.
The exercise despite the challenging times posed by the pandemic is a direct testimony to India's long-standing friendship with Singapore and Thailand with special emphasis on strong military cooperation in the Maritime domain.
The exercise was envisaged to see greater cooperation in the coming years with the participation of advanced platforms in complex exercises spanning over the entire spectrum of warfare at sea.
On conclusion of SITMEX, participating ships from RSN will exercise with the Indian Navy as part of SIMBEX 20, in the Bay of Bengal.
PEPPER IT WITH
Malabar Exercise, SIMBEX, MILAN, ADMM+ exercise