India, Myanmar kick off maiden bilateral naval exercise

India and Myanmar have kicked off their first bilateral naval exercise IMNEX-18 which will be held odd the east coast of India.

Two Union of Myanmar Navy ships – frigate UMS King Sin Phyu Shin and offshore patrol vessel UMS Inlay – arrived in Visakhapatnam on March 25 ahead of the start of the exercise.

IMNEX-18 will take place in two phases, a harbor phase from March 25 to 30 and a sea phase from March 31 to April 3.

The Indian Navy said the exercise would be aimed at strengthening professional interaction, both in harbor and at sea and would be a start for attaining interoperability between the two navies.

The Myanmar Navy previously took part in the Milan-18 maritime exercise at Port Blair which concluded on March 13.

Indian Navy assets taking part in the drill include ASW frigate INS Sahyadri, corvette INS Kamorta, one Chetak helicopter, two Hawk Advanced jet trainer aircraft and a submarine.

The harbor phase will include briefings, practical demonstrations, professional discussions, social interactions, cross deck visits and sports fixtures. Once at sea, the ships will take part in fleet maneuvers, gun firings as well as coordinated anti-submarine exercises.