India, Russia begin joint military exercises even as Russians arrive in Pakistan for joint drill

russia-indiaThe eighth edition of India-Russia Joint Military Exercise ‘INDRA-2016’ has begun in the Ussiriysk district of Vladivostok in Russia, even as Russian forces arrived in Pakistan on its first ever-joint military drill.

Main focus of the Indo-Russian joint exercise is on ‘Counter-Terrorism Operations in semi mountainous and jungle terrain under United Nations Mandate’, said the Ministry of Defense.

“To achieve interoperability in joint operations a comprehensive training programme spanning eleven days has been drawn up for the troops from both sides to acquaint themselves with the respective approach to such operations,” added the ministry.

250 soldiers of the KUMAON Regiment are representing the Indian Contingent and the Russian army is being represented by 250 soldiers from the 59th Motorized Infantry Brigade. Meanwhile, another contingent of 200 Russian soldiers are in Pakistan.

Indra series of bilateral exercises is one of the major bilateral defence cooperation initiatives between India and Russia since 2003.

The Indian contingent is scheduled to return to India on termination of the exercise in the first week of October ‘16.