Indian Coast Guard ship INS Vijit has docked in Cambodia’s Sihanoukville port as part of its ongoing “goodwill visit to Southeast Asia”.
In a statement issued in Monday, the Indian embassy in Cambodia said in Phnom Penh there would be professional interaction and sports events between personnel of the Indian Coast Guard and the Royal Cambodian Navy during the visit.
The programme would also include official calls and interaction with government dignitaries, The Phnom Penh Post reported, adding that guided tours for ICG personnel had been planned during the visit.
INS Vijit will remain docked at Sihanoukville till Friday. At the end of the visit, the Indian Coast Guard and the Royal Cambodian Navy will conduct a passing exercise, said the Post report.
The visit of INS Vijit seeks to enhance maritime cooperation between Cambodia and India. The embassy said it would also contribute to enhancing the security and stability of the region and the world at large.
Quoting the embassy statement, the Post report said: “Bilateral relations between India and Cambodia have been traditionally strong with cultural, religious and economic ties. India-Cambodia relations have been strengthened in recent years due to various high-level visits between the two countries and growing convergence on developmental, regional and security issues.”and also bolster the strong bonds of friendship between the two nations.
Union Minister of Commerce and Civil Aviation Suresh Prabhu visited Cambodia earlier this month, leafing an Indian delegation at the 7th Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership Intersessional Ministerial Meeting in Siem Reap. He has also paid a visit in May 2018.
Prior to that, in January 2018, Cambodia Prime Minister Hun Sen was a guest of honour at the Republic Day Parade in India as a part of the Asean-India Commemorative Summit.
Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman and External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj also visited the country in June and August 2018, respectively.
As part of its goodwill visit, INS Vijit sailed to Sabang in Indonesia before coming to Sihanoukville. During its voyage from March 17 to 20, officers and crew of Vijit will held interaction with officials of Bakamla (Indonesian Coast Guard), Indonesian Armed Forces and the civil administration at Sabang.
This visit followed the first-ever visit of Naval Ship INS Sumitra to Sabang in July 2018.
“The ship is commanded by Comdt T Ashish (0532-J), who is a long Navigation Direction officer. ICGS Vijit is the 2nd in the series of 90 meter Offshore Patrol Vessels and was commissioned at Goa on 11 Dec 2010. ‘Vijit’ meaning “Winner or Victorious” is the testimony of India’s shipbuilding capabilities and the resolve of Govt of India to safeguard country’s maritime interests,” read a statement issued by the Indian embassy in Jakarta.
It added: “The ship’s complement includes a team of 15 Officers and 90 men who are highly motivated and fully trained to excel at all tasks with alacrity and elan in keeping with Coast Guard’s motto ‘Vayam Rakshamah’.”