India, Japan to hold first joint air force maneuvers in January

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India and Japan are set to conduct their first-ever bilateral combat air exercise over 10 days in Japan next month, Report informs referring to The Tribune.

The exercise named ‘Veer Guardian 23’ will be conducted from January 16 to January 26. The Japan Air Self-Defense Force (JASDF) will conduct bilateral fighter training with the Indian Air Force (IAF).

The exercise aims to promote mutual understanding and strengthen defense cooperation between the air forces.

IAF will be fielding its Russian-origin Sukhoi-30MKI aircraft drawn from a squadron under the Western Air Command. The IAF 150 crew will be flying in IAF’s C-17 transport aircraft. The fighter jets on their journey from India to Japan will be re-fueled mid-air using the IL-78 planes of the IAF.

Japan will field its F-2 jets which are derivatives of the F-16 plane of the US. It will also field the F-15, like the ones used by the US too.

The exercise will be held at Hyakuri Air Base north-west of Tokyo.