Shore diplomacy with Indian partners

8 September 2023

Members of the Royal Australian Naval College (RANC) have hosted a delegation from the Indian Navy as part of a relationship-building exercise between the regional partners.

Indian sailors came ashore at HMAS Creswell, with a reciprocal cohort of RANC officer trainees touring Indian Navy Ships (INS) Kolkata and Sahyadri.

The visit was part of the biennial exercise AUSINDEX, held this year in the East Australia Exercise Areas off the NSW coast.

Australian warships HMA Ships Brisbane and Choules participated in the exercise alongside Kolkata and Sahyadri.

Commander Australian Maritime Task Group Captain Hamish Frazer said AUSINDEX, first held in 2015, demonstrated the strength of Australia’s relationship with India, “so that we can work collaboratively in Australian territorial waters and the surrounding region”.

“Regular training exercises with the Indian Navy ensure that we can perform to the highest standards when required,” Captain Frazer said.

Commanding Officer of the RANC Commander Kate Woodall said the visit was a chance to share Australian naval history and traditions with the Indian Navy.

“We are two proud nations who share a similar story and naval heritage so the opportunity to highlight our close connections only nurtures a greater spirit and understanding between our partner navies,” she said.

Commander Woodall said trainees at the college were introduced to the broad spectrum of operations the Navy contributes to, including the maritime task of diplomacy.

“For our trainees to embark in INS Kolkata and Sahyadri and directly contribute to relationship-building with our partner navies is a remarkable opportunity for them so early into their careers,” she said.



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