Indian, Russian troops begin joint military exercise
India and Russia on Friday kicked off the eighth edition of their joint military exercise in Vladivostok with a focus on counter-terror operations.
The ‘Indra-2016’ exercise is being held in the Ussiriysk district and the main focus of this edition of the joint drills is on ‘Counter-Terrorism Operations in semi mountainous and jungle terrain under United Nations Mandate’.
To achieve interoperability in joint operations, troops from both sides would acquaint themselves with the respective approach to such operations. A comprehensive training programme, spanning 11 days, has been drawn up for the purpose, the Indian Army said in a statement.
Brigadier Sukrit Chadah is leading the Indian contingent of 250 soldiers from the Kumaon Regiment, while the Russian army is being represented by 250 soldiers from the 59th Motorised Infantry Brigade.
Addressing the contingents, Brig Chadah highlighted the need for jointness between the two nations to defeat terrorism.
The ‘Indra’ series of bilateral exercises is one of the major bilateral defence cooperation initiatives between India and Russia since 2003. The Indian contingent is scheduled to return to India on termination of the exercise in early October.
The exercise started on a day when 70 soldiers from a mechanised infantry unit of the Russian military arrived in Pakistan to participate in the first-ever joint military drills between the two former Cold War rivals.