USS Cole and FS Surcouf to Observe Indo-UK Joint Naval Exercise ‘Konkan 2008′

by OldSailor on April 22, 2008


indian_navy_ensign aircraft_carrier royal_navy_ensign

The third edition of Indo-UK joint Naval Exercise ‘Konkan-2008′ is currently going on in the Arabian Sea. The exercise has commenced on April 21 and is expected to conclude on May 02, 2008. For Royal Navy this is part of UK’s Orion 08 Deployment.

The ships from Indian Navy are under the tactical command of the Flag Officer Commander Western Fleet, Rear Admiral Anil Chopra. The ships participating in the exercise are:

  • Guided-missile destroyers INS Mysore,INS Rajput
  • Guided missile frigate INS Gomati
  • Fleet Replenishment Tanker INS Aditya
  • Submarine INS Shishumar
  • Sea Harrier aircraft operating from Goa

The ships from Royal Navy are commanded by Commodore Tom Cunningham RN, Commander Carrier Strike Group. The ships participating in the exercise are:

  • Aircraft carrier HMS Illustrious with six Merlin helicopters
  • Guided missile frigate HMS Westminister
  • Fleet Replenishment Tanker RFA Wave Knight
  • Afloat Stores Ship RFA Fort Austin
  • Hunter-killer nuclear-powered submarine HMS Trafalgar

Embedded units during ‘Konkan-2008′ are USS Cole and French Stealth Ship FS Surcouf.

The exercise would be covering

  • Combined maritime operations including tactical manoeuvers
  • Exercises between the submarines
  • Intermediate and advanced Anti-Submarine Warfare
  • Maritime Interdiction Operations
  • VBSS (Visit, Board, Search and Seizure) procedures
  • Naval Gunfire Support
  • Clearance Diving

A joint press conference by the two navies is expected at 1030 hrs on April 23 on board INS Mysore in Goa. Royal Navy Task Force units would also visit Goa later this month. During the harbor phase, both the Navies are to participate in lectures on professional and contemporary maritime issues. Also both the Navies would participate in sports and cultural activities at Goa.

Update: May 04

Why there was no media coverage of the exercise ? Indian Express reports that USS Cole’s observer role in the exercise was not communicated to the Indian Government by the Indian Navy in time. Read more from Indian Express.

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