US-Indian Navy joint exercise begins

Chennai, Nov 7: The four-day joint Naval exercise 'MALABAR 2013' in the Bay of Bengal between the US and India, providing an opportunity to advance multinational maritime relationship and mutual security issues, began today.

This is the first time missile-guided destroyer USS MCCampbell is participating with the Indian Navy in the joint exercise in the Indian Ocean, official sources said. USS MCCampbell, which was berthed at the Chennai Port Trust on Sunday last, is equipped with several weapon systems including Mk34 Gun Weapon System, Tomahawk missile, anti-submarine rocket launcher, surface search radar and anti-ship missiles.

"The ship is making a routine port visit, intended to provide the sailors of the USS MCCampbell an opportunity for engagement with their Indian Navy counterparts and for cultural exchange," a press statement from US Consulate said.

USS MCCampbell was the first to offer support to the people in North Japan when the tsunami struck two years ago, claiming many lives and rendering many homeless. The ship's crew as part of the visit participated in community relationships in Chennai which included a visit to famous temples and shrines, besides participating in a cricket match. MALABAR is a regularly scheduled bilateral naval field training exercise and the latest is conducted to "advance multinational maritime relationship and mutual security issues."


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