The 13th Edition of the Indian Navy (IN) – Royal Navy of Oman (RNO) bilateral exercise ‘Naseem Al Bahr’ (Sea Breeze) has been conducted on the coast of Oman. The Indian Navy’s guided missile stealth frigate, INS Trikand, offshore patrol vessel, INS Sumitra, and Maritime Patrol Aircraft, (MPA) Dornier, participated in the exercise.
The exercise has three phases: harbour phase, sea phase and debrief. Activities undertaken during the harbour phase included professional interactions between IN and RNO operations teams and friendly sports fixtures between the two navies. IN Ships Trikand and Sumitra, along with RNO Ships Al Shinas and Al Seeb, sailed for the sea phase. IN – MPA Dornier, RNO MPA and shore-based RAFO fighter aircraft Hawks joined the exercise at sea. The sea phase included tactical maritime exercises involving surface action, air defence, maritime surveillance and interdiction/VBSS. These operations helped in strengthening interoperability as well as enhancing understanding of each other’s procedures. The last phase of the exercise, debrief, was conducted at the RNO Naval Base at Duqm.
India and Oman have traditionally enjoyed warm and friendly relations, sharing common cultural values. Naval exercises have added strength and substance to these bilateral ties. The first IN-RNO exercise was conducted in 1993. This year marks 30 years of IN-RNO bilateral exercises.
INS Trikand, a frontline frigate, is equipped with a versatile range of weapons and sensors. The ship is a part of the Indian Navy’s Western Fleet, based in Mumbai. INS Sumitra, a multirole offshore patrol vessel is part of the Eastern Fleet of the Indian Navy, based at Visakhapatnam.