The Indian Ministry of Defence has revealed the successful firing of Combat Kh35E anti-ship missiles on 31 January.

The missiles were launched from the Indian Navy’s long-range maritime reconnaissance aircraft, Ilyushin 38SD.

The test firing was conducted during the theatre level readiness operational exercise 2021 (TROPEX-21), reported the Press Trust of India (PTI).

Following the release, the Combat Kh35E missiles destroyed the target.

A defence statement was quoted by PTI as saying: “This reaffirms the Indian Navy’s capability to carry out long range maritime strikes in the Indian Ocean Region, a capability that is central to meeting operational challenges and ensuring safe seas, secure coasts.”

TROPEX is an inter-service military exercise that aims to strengthen the joint operations of the Indian armed forces. It is conducted every two years.

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Last month, the Indian Navy conducted the second edition of the biennial pan-India coastal defence exercise ‘Sea Vigil-21’.

It was a build up towards TROPEX.

The Indian Navy units combat readiness was put to test in a ‘complex multi-dimensional exercise set in the context of the current geo-strategic environment’.

It saw the participation of assets of the Indian Air Force, army and coast guard.

The Ilyushin Il-38 maritime patrol and anti-submarine warfare (ASW) aircraft was designed by the Russian-based Ilyushin Aviation Complex.