Maritime security basis of Iran-China-Russia drills: Iran navy chief
The launch of overnight strikes against aerial targets constituted one of the principal exercises of the naval drills.
The Commander of the Iranian Navy, Rear Admiral Shahram Irani said on Friday in an interview with Press TV that maritime security chiefly forms the basis of the joint exercise held by Russia, China, and Iran in the Sea of Oman.
Irani added that Iran's naval forces attach great importance to the safety of maritime navigation.
"The focus of the first day of the naval security belt combined war game 2023 was on coordination, cooperation, the rescue of vessels that have fallen prey to pirate attacks and how to counter acts of terror," Irani said, noting that combating maritime terrorism figures among the primary objectives of the drills.
"Presently, the unjustifiable presence of some foreign military forces continues to pose challenges to the region. The issue had to be addressed and handled. Therefore, all available military means, both in terms of watercraft and aircraft, were utilized and all designed drills were successfully exercised," he added.
On a related note, the spokesman for the joint exercise Rear Admiral Mostafa Tajoddini said that the launch of overnight strikes against hostile aerial targets constituted one of the principal exercises of the naval drills, which all three parties practiced successfully late Thursday.
Tajoddini added that the drills included exercises on targeting various aircraft in close coordination and in accordance with a common tactical language.
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On March 15, the Iranian, Chinese, and Russian navies joined forces to launch joint military drills in the Gulf of Oman in an attempt to fortify security and cooperation.
Named the 'naval security belt combined war game 2023,' the drills were launched on March 15 and are due to last until March 19, according to the Chinese Ministry of National Defense in its statement on Wednesday.
The drills are intended to "deepen practical cooperation among the navies of participating countries," it added.
In recent years, Iran, Russia, and China have held joint navy drills before, with the aim to amp up the security of international maritime trade, counter and tackle piracy and maritime terrorism, and exchange details in naval rescue and relief operations, alongside operational and tactical experiences.
In more recent news as well, The Wall Street Journal reported that Chinese president Xi Jinping sent an offer to Iran and Arab nations of the Gulf, or the nations of the GCC, to host a summit this year in China.
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