Ranikhet (Uttarakhand),[India] Sept. 27 : The fortnight-long India-American joint military exercise has concluded in Uttarakhand, with soldiers of both countries successfully conducting several anti-terrorism drills.
The 12th edition of the "Yudh Abhyas" or Joint Military Training Exercise - 2016 was held at the Chaubattia Military Station in Ranikhet district.
Started in 2004 under the US Army Pacific Partnership Programme, it is an annual battalion-level exercise conducted with 225 personnel from each side, and taking place in India and the United States alternatively.
Officials said it was one of the longest running joint military training exercises. "In the final phase of the training, the joint validation exercise saw both armies conducting a smooth raid on a terrorist hideout, showcasing cooperation coherence between the two forces, as both the armies are vastly experienced in counter-insurgency, counter-terrorism operations.
And for this varied experience from Iraq, Afghanistan, Jammu and Kashmir and the northeast, both sides greatly benefitted from this interaction," said Major General R.
K. Raina of Garuda division of Indian Army, yesterday. The military training exercises provide an ideal platform for security personnel of the two countries to share their experiences on counter-insurgency operations, especially in the mountainous region.
The joint exercises include cordon and search in counter-militant operations, jungle lane shooting, reflex shooting, long-range firing and cliff assault techniques.
"We are honoured to be here, to watch such a great training here today. I just wanted to tell you upfront that I am very impressed with the hospitality and the military capability of the Indian army here that has been our host.
It has been a spectacular training event to this point," said Major General, 7 Infantry Division, US Army, Thomas Junior James.
The main aim of the joint military exercise is to strengthen defence cooperation and mutual understanding between the two countries.