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14-day Indo-French Army exercise commences

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JAIPUR (PTI): The opening ceremony of the 14-day long joint Indo-French exercise 'Shakti-2019' was held at the Mahajan field firing ranges in western Rajasthan on Friday.

Soldiers of the Sikh Regiment contingent of the Indian Army's South Western Command and the French Army's 21st Marine Infantry Regiment of the 6th Armoured Brigade are participating in the exercise, which is aimed at enhancing inter-operability between the two armies and further strengthening of military relations between the two nations.

The opening ceremony saw the national flags of both the countries being unfurled amidst renditions of the respective national anthems.

The ceremony also witnessed synchronised marching of troops to martial tunes, which was followed by a speech by reviewing officers of both the countries.

"The shared commitment to democracy, pluralism and multilateralism is an important dimension of the bilateral relationship and global responsibilities between India and France," Brigadier P S Cheema of the South Western Command said.

"We share perspectives about countering terrorism with a firm conviction. We have a lot to learn from each other, especially in our approach towards handling the modern-day challenges posed by global terrorism," he said.

"Our armies have gained a wealth of knowledge on how to fight in a counter-terrorist environment all across the world. We have many lessons to share with each other and coming together today gives us this opportunity," Colonel Ludovic Dumont, France's Defence Attach to India, said.

The exercise will facilitate both the armies to know each other better, share their operational experience and enhance awareness through information exchange.

This will help them in undertaking joint operations at the platoon level for countering terrorist threats under the United Nations mandate, Defence spokesperson Colonel Sombit Ghosh said.

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India  France  Army  Exercise  Defence  
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