Indian, Japanese and US naval forces have commenced the 21st annual edition of Exercise Malabar in the Bay of Bengal.

Malabar-17 seeks to increase interoperability amongst the three navies and develop common understanding and procedures for maritime security operations.

The exercise is set to run from 10-17 July and will include professional interactions, as well as a wide range of sea-based operational activities.

Participating personnel will conduct aircraft carrier operations, air defence, anti-submarine warfare (ASW), surface warfare, and search and rescue activities.

Joint manoeuvres and tactical procedures are also set to be practiced, as well as visit, board, search and seizure (VBSS) operations.

The exercise will witness participation from 16 ships, two submarines and more than 95 aircraft.

"The exercise is set to run from 10-17 July and will include professional interactions, as well as a wide range of sea-based operational activities."

The Indian Navy’s INS Vikramaditya aircraft carrier and its air wing, guided missile destroyer Ranvir, indigenous stealth frigates Shivalik and Sahyadri, indigenous ASW corvette Kamorta, and missile corvettes Kora and Kirpan will take part in the exercise.

One Sindhughosh class submarine, the INS Jyoti fleet tanker and the P8I long-range maritime patrol aircraft (MPA) are also set to participate.

Additionally, the exercise involves the US Navy’s ships from the Nimitz Carrier Strike Group and other units from the US 7th Fleet.

Participating US Navy assets include its Nimitz-class aircraft carrier Nimitz with its air wing, Ticonderoga-class cruiser Princeton and the Arleigh Burke-class destroyers Kidd, Howard and Shoup, along with integral helicopters, a Los Angeles-class attack submarine and one long range MPA P8A.

In addition, the Japanese Maritime Self Defense Force are set to deploy JS Izumo, a helicopter carrier with SH 60K helicopters, and JS Sazanami, a missile destroyer with SH 60K integral helicopter.