Exercise Yudh Abhyas 2021

India and the United States are set to start a 15-day mega military exercise in Alaska from October 15, 2021 in a bid to further deepen bilateral military cooperation between both the countries.

Key Points

  • Year 2021 will mark the 17th edition of the exercise “Yudh Abhyas”.
  • Exercise will be conducted at Joint Base Elmendorf Richardson in Alaska.
  • It will commence from October 15 and end on 29.

Indian contingent

At the exercise, the Indian contingent will comprise of 350 personnel from an infantry battalion group of Indian Army.

Background

The previous (16th) edition of the exercise took place in February 2021 in Mahajan Field Firing Ranges in Bikaner.

Significance of the exercise

Exercise Yudh Abhyas is a step towards growing military cooperation between the both the countries. It is carried with the aim of enhancing understanding, cooperation and interoperability between armies of India and USA. It will also focus on combined arms manoeuvres in cold climatic conditions. The primary aim of the exercise if to share tactical level drills and learn best practices from each other.

Major Defence Partner

  • United States had designated India as a Major Defence Partner, in June 2016. Both the countries also signed key defence and security pacts in past few years such as ‘Logistics Exchange Memorandum of Agreement (LEMOA)’ in 2016.
  • LEMOA allows the militaries from both the countries to use each other’s bases for repair & replenishment of supplies and to provide a deeper cooperation.
  • Countries also signed COMCASA (Communications Compatibility and Security Agreement) in the year 2018. COMCASA provides for interoperability between both the militaries as well as provides for sale of high-end technology from the US.
  • They signed BECA (Basic Exchange and Cooperation Agreement) agreement in October 2020 in order to further boost bilateral defence ties. It provides for sharing of high-end military technology, logistics & geospatial maps between both the countries.

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