Joint Naval exercise by US, Japan and Australia commences in Visakha

INS Shivalik is seen in action in the Bay of Bengal waters today

The 24th edition of the MALABAR naval exercise has commenced today off Visakhapatnam as per schedule in the Bay of Bengal in 2 phases.


According to the details, Phase 1 of the Exercise MALABAR 20 involving participation by Indian Navy (IN), United States Navy (USN), Japan Maritime Self Defence Force (JMSDF), and Royal Australian Navy (RAN) has been scheduled to commence off Visakhapatnam in the Bay of Bengal from 03 to 06 November 2020.

MALABAR series of maritime exercises commenced in 1992 as a bilateral IN-USN exercise. JMSDF  joined MALABAR in 2015. The 2020 edition will now witness the participation of the RAN in this joint maritime exercise.

Phase-1 of MALABAR 20 witnessed the participation of Indian Navy units with United States Ship (USS) John S McCain (Guided-missile destroyer), Her Majesty’s Australian Ship (HMAS) Ballarat (long-range frigates) with integral MH-60 helicopter, and Japan Maritime Self Defence Ship (JMSDF) Onami (Destroyer) with integral SH-60 helicopter.  

The Indian Navy participation in Phase 1 has been led by Rear Admiral Sanjay Vatsayan, Flag Officer Commanding Eastern Fleet. Indian Navy units participating in the exercise include destroyer Ranvijay, frigate Shivalik, Off-Shore Patrol Vessel Sukanya, Fleet Support Ship Shakti and submarine Sindhuraj. In addition, Advanced Jet Trainer Hawk, long-range maritime patrol aircraft P-8IDornier maritime patrol aircraft, and helicopters will also be participating in the exercise. 

The exercise, being conducted as a ‘non-contact, at sea only’ exercise in view of COVID-19 pandemic, will showcase the high-levels of synergy and coordination between the friendly navies, which is based on their shared values and commitment to an open, inclusive Indo-Pacific and a rules-based international order. MALABAR 20 Phase 1 would witness complex and advanced naval exercises including surface, anti-submarine and anti-air warfare operations, cross deck flying, seamanship evolutions and weapon firing exercises.

Phase 2 of MALABAR 20 is scheduled to be conducted in the Arabian Sea in mid-November 2020.

INS Ran Vijay