Exercise BRIGHT STAR-23
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- An Indian Air Force (IAF) contingent departed today, for participating in Exercise BRIGHT STAR-23.
- Exercise Bright Star is a series of biannual combined and joint military exercises led by the United States and Egypt.
- The exercises began in 1980, rooted in the 1977 Camp David Accords. After its signing, the United States Armed Forces and the Egyptian Armed Forces agreed to conduct training together in Egypt.
- Bright Star is designed to strengthen ties between the Egyptian Armed Forces and the United States Central Command and demonstrate and enhance the ability of the Americans to reinforce their allies in the Middle East in the event of war.
Exercise BRIGHT STAR-23
- Exercise BRIGHT STAR-23 is scheduled to be held at Cairo (West) Air Base, Egypt from 27 August to 16 September 2023.
- This is for the first time that IAF is participating in Ex BRIGHT STAR-23 which will also see participation of contingents from the United States of America, Saudi Arabia, Greece and Qatar.
- The Indian Air Force contingent will consist of five MiG-29, two IL-78, two C-130 and two C-17 aircraft.
- Personnel from the IAF's Garud Special Forces, as well as those from the Numbers 28, 77, 78 and 81 Squadrons will be participating in the exercise. The IAF transport aircraft will also provide airlift to approximately 150 personnel from the Indian Army.
- The objective of the exercise is to practice planning and execution of joint operations. Besides leading to the formation of bonding across borders, such interactions also provide a means to further strategic relations between participating nations. IAF contingents to flying exercises abroad are thus no less than Diplomats in Flight Suits.
- The IAF’s involvement in international exercises is not merely a display of military capabilities in fact, such exercises are instrumental in strengthening diplomatic relations.
- India and Egypt have strong defence cooperation. Recent visits by India’s Defence Minister and Prime Minister to Egypt have further intensified this defence cooperation. The two countries have also enhanced their joint training with regular exercises between their armed forces.
- As India continues to rise on the global stage, the IAF’s participation in multinational exercises like BRIGHT STAR-23 cements its status as a force for peace and stability.
Q. The involvement of the Indian Air Force in international exercises is not merely a display of military capabilities in fact, such exercises are instrumental in strengthening diplomatic relations. Elucidate.