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SOURCE: IANS

 Indian Navy’s indigenous stealth frigate INS Shivalik, mission deployed to the South China Sea and the Pacific Ocean, is participating in the 29th edition of the biennial Rim of the Pacific (RIMPAC) exercise, the world’s largest international maritime exercise, being held in Hawaii.

According to the US Navy, approximately 29 nations, 40 surface ships, three submarines, 14 national land forces, over 150 aircraft and more than 25,000 personnel will train and operate in and around the Hawaiian Islands during the exercise — being held under the theme of ‘Partners: Integrated and Prepared’ – which runs until August 1.

The exercise, hosted by the Commander of the US Pacific Fleet, will witness the participating forces integrate and exercise a wide range of capabilities, from disaster relief to maritime security operations, and from sea control to complex warfighting.

“The Rim of the Pacific exercise has grown over the years to be the world’s largest and premier joint combined maritime training opportunity. The exercise’s purpose is to build relationships, to enhance interoperability and proficiency and, ultimately, contribute to the peace and stability in the vitally-important Indo-Pacific region,” said Vice Admiral John Wade, Commander, US 3rd Fleet and RIMPAC 2024 Combined Task Force (CTF) commander.

Various amphibious operations, gunnery, missile, anti-submarine, and air defence exercises, as well as military medicine, humanitarian assistance, disaster relief, counter-piracy, mine clearance operations, explosive ordnance disposal, and diving and salvage operations will also be conducted during the exercise.

Besides India, the participating countries include Australia, Belgium, Brazil, Brunei, Canada, Chile, Colombia, Denmark, Ecuador, France, Germany, Indonesia, Israel, Italy, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, Netherlands, New Zealand, Peru, South Korea, the Philippines, Singapore, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Tonga, United Kingdom and the USA.

Earlier this month, INS Shivalik participated in the eighth edition of the bilateral Japan-India Maritime Exercise 2024 (JIMEX 24) held in Japan’s Yokosuka.

The Indian Naval Ship’s deployment to the region is aimed at enhancing the degree of interoperability with the Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force (JMSDF), US Navy and other partner navies participating in RIMPAC 24.