War Iran, Russia, China to stage Indian Ocean war games

War Iran, Russia, China to stage Indian Ocean war games


Iran, Russia and China will begin on Friday joint naval drills for three days in the Indian Ocean, seeking to reinforce “common security”, an Iranian naval official said Thursday.

The announcement of the manoeuvres coincides with Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi’s official visit to Moscow, where he said Tehran has “no limits for expanding ties with Russia”.

The drills also come during talks in Vienna aimed at salvaging a 2015 nuclear deal between Iran and world powers, including Russia and China. That agreement had offered Tehran relief from crippling international sanctions in return for deep curbs to its nuclear programme.

Then-US president Donald Trump unilaterally withdrew his country from the pact in 2018 and reimposed sanctions, leading Tehran to begin reneging on its commitments.

The spokesman for the exercises, Admiral Mustafa Tajeddini, told state television that they would include “the participation of 11 naval units from the armed forces of Iran, three units from the Revolutionary Guards’ navy, three units from Russia and two units from China”.

He added that they would take place over an area of 17,000 square kilometres (almost 6,600 square miles) in the northern Indian Ocean.

Tajeddini said they aim to “enhance capabilities and combat readiness, strengthen military ties between the Iranian, Russian and Chinese navies, ensure common security and counter maritime terrorism”.

The three countries held similar drills in the Gulf of Oman and the Indian Ocean in late 2019, when tensions had risen between Iran and its US-allied Arab neighbours in the Gulf.

Russia to hold naval drills in Atlantic, Pacific, Arctic, Mediterranean

Moscow (AFP) Jan 20, 2022 –
Russia announced Thursday it will hold huge naval drills in the Atlantic, Arctic, Pacific and Mediterranean this month and February, at a time of heightened tensions with Western nations.

The war games will involve “more than 140 warships and support vessels, more than 60 aircraft, 1,000 pieces of military equipment, and about 10,000 servicemen,” the defence ministry said in a statement carried by Russian news agencies.

The announcement comes one day ahead of a meeting in Geneva between US Secretary of State Antony Blinken and Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, aimed at defusing tensions between the Kremlin and the West over Ukraine.

The West has accused Russia of massing some 100,000 troops around the borders of its ex-Soviet ally and says Moscow is preparing an invasion.

Russia denies the claims and has demanded that NATO limit its presence in Europe and not admit Ukraine as a member of the security bloc.

Russia has also recently repeatedly pointed to US naval drills and air patrols in the Black Sea as exacerbating Moscow’s security concerns.

Russia is currently holding naval drills alongside China and Iran in the Gulf of Oman that are due to conclude Saturday. They come during Iranian leader Ebrahim Raisi’s first visit to Russia.

Thursday’s announcement of the coordinated drills comes after Moscow said earlier in the day it had test-fired a Kalibr cruise missile from a submarine in the Sea of Japan, targeting a land-based target.

The defence ministry said the main goal of the upcoming massive drills was to “protect Russian national interests in the oceans and to counter military threats to Russia from seas and oceans”.

With ties between Russia and the West under particular strain over Ukraine’s security, Blinken was in Berlin on Thursday meeting with European allies ahead of the meeting with Lavrov.

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Three dead in blast on Soviet-era Indian warship

New Delhi (AFP) Jan 19, 2022

Three Indian naval personnel were killed in an explosion on one of the country’s oldest destroyers at a naval dockyard in Mumbai, authorities said.

The blast occurred Tuesday in an internal compartment on the Soviet-built INS Ranvir, commissioned in 1986, according to the Indian Navy.

“No material damage has been reported… (A) board of inquiry has been ordered to investigate into the cause,” the navy said in a statement Tuesday.

Broadcaster NDTV quoted sources saying the explosion did not … read more

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