New Delhi, Mar 2 (IANS): To enhance military cooperation with the friendly countries, the Indian Air Force (IAF) will for the first time take part in the Exercise Desert Flag-VI along with air forces from hosts UAE, the US, France, Saudi Arabia, South Korea and Bahrain.
Ex Desert Flag is an annual multi-national large force employment warfare exercise hosted by the UAE Air Force. The exercise is scheduled from March 3 to March 27 at the Al-Dhafra airbase in the UAE.
"IAF is participating with six Su-30 MKI, two C-17 and one IL-78 tanker aircraft. The C-17 Globemaster will provide support for induction/de-induction of the IAF contingent," said the Ministry of Defence.
The Su-30 MKI aircraft will undertake long range ferry, routing direct from India to the exercise area with aerial refuelling support from the IL-78 tanker aircraft.
The aim of the exercise is to provide operational exposure to the participating forces while training them to undertake simulated air combat operations in a controlled environment.
The participating forces will get an opportunity to enhance their operational capabilities along with mutual exchange of the best practices.
The large-scale exercise involving diverse fighter aircraft from across the globe will provide the participating forces, including the IAF, a unique opportunity to exchange knowledge and experience, besides enhancing operational capabilities and interoperability.
Interacting with the participating nations in a dynamic and realistic warfare environment will also contribute to strengthen international relations.
Over the last decade, the IAF has regularly hosted and participated in multi-national operational exercises, wherein collaborative engagements were undertaken among the best air forces of the world.