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Aero India 2023

India-Africa defence ties: Second edition of AFINDEX culminates in Pune

The second edition of the Africa-India Field Training Exercise (AFINDEX-2023) has concluded in Pune. (Photo: MoD)

PUNE (PTI): The second edition of the Africa-India Field Training Exercise (AFINDEX-2023), described by Indian Army Chief General Manoj Pande as an unparalleled platform to foster the spirit of friendship, culminated at the Foreign Training Node in Aundh, Pune on Wednesday.

It saw the participation of 25 African nations.

A total of 124 security personnel, including women, participated in the exercise that was held from March 16 to 29.

On the Indian side, troops from the Sikh, Maratha and Mahar Regiments took part in the multinational exercise.

On Tuesday, an Army Chiefs’ conclave was held in Pune where army chiefs of 10 African nations were in attendance.

The aim of the exercise was to build positive military relations, imbibe each other’s best practices and promote the ability to operate together while undertaking the execution of Humanitarian Mine Action and Peacekeeping Operations under the UN mandate.

The focus of training on Humanitarian Mine Action has been on education and awareness, casualty evacuation, victim rehabilitation, and land release and re-use techniques, General Pande said in his valedictory address.

He said the focus of training on peacekeeping operations has been on understanding the mandate of peacekeeping operations, mission organisation, protection of civilians, combat deployment and legal aspects.

Pande said the joint exercises are an unparalleled platform to foster the spirit of friendship and hone military skills and capabilities and refine joint techniques, tactics and procedures in the conduct of such operations.

The Indian Army said the joint exercise will enable the armies to learn and adopt methodologies and tactics while conducting such operations. Further, the exercise will assist the forces in the correct interpretation of rules of engagement while undertaking peacekeeping operations, it added.

The bonhomie, esprit de corps and goodwill generated during the exercise will go a long way in further strengthening the bonds between the armies by enabling understanding of each other's organisation and methodology of conducting various operations, it said.

“This exercise is a harbinger for greater cooperation between Indian and African armies in the future,” the Indian Army added

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