The Indian Air Force (IAF) will be participating in its biggest joint air exercise of 2019 with the French Air Force (FAF) at France from 1 to 14 July.
The Garuda-VI exercise will be held at France’s Mont-de-Marsan Air Base. ”The exercise will consist of IAF’s 04 Su-30 MKI frontline multi-role fighter jets & 01 IL-78 tanker. IAF’s 02 C-17 Globe Master will provide transport support for induction/de-induction for the exercise”, the IAF tweeted on Saturday.
The French Embassy in New Delhi said that the Garuda-VI exercise is a tactical Indo-French exercise aimed at enhancing the interoperability level of the French and Indian crews in air defence and ground attack missions as part of the Indo-Pacific cooperation between the two countries.
Falling under the global framework of bilateral cooperation between the two nations, the Garuda exercise is alternately held in France and India.
From the French side, the exercise will see the deployment of a great majority of French Air Force units: Rafale, Alpha Jet, Mirage 2000, C135, E3F, C130, and Casa.
The IAF contingent, on Friday, landed at the Mont-de-Marsan Air Base in Southwest France to take part in the two-week drill. The IAF said the contingent was given a warm welcome upon its arrival by men from the French Air Force.
The exercise will provide an opportunity for the two forces to learn from each other’s best practices, the IAF said. The IAF’s Sukhoi 30 MKI will function in simulated operational warfighting along with the French Air Force’s Rafale aircraft.
Earlier in June 2014, Garuda V was held in India at the Jodhpur Air Force station.