JEDDAH: IRFAN MOHAMMED
Published — Wednesday 23 January 2013
Last update 23 January 2013 1:05 am
Saudi Arabia and Pakistan completed their 10th joint naval exercise on the Makran coast of the Arabian Sea yesterday, according to reports in the Pakistani media.
The exercise included maritime warfare maneuvers related to counter-terrorism, convoy protection, mine countermeasures and intelligence-based operations.
According to reports, four royal Saudi naval ships including the frigate HMS Makkah; a Dauphin helicopter; a patrol craft HMS Tabuk equipped with a guided missile; mine counter measures vessel HMS Shaqra; and a tanker HMS Buraida participated in the exercise. The Saudi navy also included marines, special forces operatives and bomb-disposal teams.
On the Pakistani side there were three destroyers, missile boats, mine hunters, a submarine, a long-range maritime patrol aircraft and helicopters. There were also marines and special forces teams involved.
Naval Staff Admiral Mohammad Asif Sandila was quoted as saying that all seafaring nations need to collaborate to protect each other’s interests. He said the exercise was successful and strengthened ties between the two countries.
The Saudi Royal Navy's Western Fleet Commander Rear Admiral Ibrahim Othman Al-Delaijan also participated in the maritime exercise.