PASSEX Exercise begins
GS Paper - 2 International Relations
India and the US on 28 March 2021 kicked off a two-day naval exercise in the eastern Indian Ocean Region, reflecting the growing congruence in their defence and military partnership. The Indian Navy deployed its warship Shivalik and long-range maritime patrol aircraft P8I in the ‘PASSEX’ exercise while the US Navy was represented by the USS Theodore Rosevelt carrier strike group.
- A carrier battle group or carrier strike group is a mega naval fleet comprising an aircraft carrier, accompanied by a large number of destroyers, frigates and other ships.
- In a first, enhancing jointmanship, Indian Air Force fighters were also included in the exercise affording the IAF an opportunity to practice air interception and air defence with the US Navy.
- The exercise is aimed at consolidating the synergy and interoperability achieved during the Malabar exercise that took place in November last.
- Besides the Indian Navy, the Malabar naval exercise was participated by the navies of the US, Australia and Japan. The four countries are part of the Quad or Quadrilateral coalition.
- China has been suspicious about the purpose of the Malabar exercise as it feels that the annual war game is an effort to contain its influence in the Indo-Pacific region.