Iran, Pakistan hold joint maritime exercise in Persian Gulf

According to information published by Press TV on April 6, 2021, Iranian naval forces and a visiting flotilla of warships from the Pakistan Navy have staged joint exercises in the Persian Gulf, which extended to the Strait of Hormuz and the northern part of the Indian Ocean.
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Russian Vyborg Shipyard laid the Purga ice class coastguard ship of project 23550 925 001 Iranian frigate Alborz, Alvand class (Picture source: Mehr News Agency)

“The Pakistan Navy flotilla was sent from Bandar Abbas to the region to hold a combined naval exercise in the waters of the Persian Gulf and the Sea of ​​Oman,” Staff Officer of the First Naval District of the Islamic Republic of Iran Navy Captain Reza Sheibani said on Tuesday.

He added that the joint drill was meant to improve the combat capabilities of the two countries’ naval forces and exchange information and military expertise.

“The exercise sought to demonstrate naval prowess and ensure closer coordination. It also aimed to establish constructive and dynamic interactions in order to create lasting peace and security in the region,” he said.

Sheibani further said the drills included aerial and maritime transfers, and a passing exercise (PASSEX) — meant to ensure that the navies are able to communicate and cooperate in times of war or humanitarian relief — in the waters of the Persian Gulf and the Sea of ​​Oman during the war game.

He went on to say that the Iranian naval units, consisting of Alborz frigate, a missile-launching vessel and a helicopter, together with marine and logistics units of the Pakistan Navy were present in the joint naval exercise.

The Pakistani flotilla berthed at the southern Iranian port city of Bandar Abbas on Saturday for a three-day visit, and was officially received by the Iranian Navy’s officers.

The visiting flotilla consists of two vessels and is under the command of Commodore Khan Mehmood Asif.

During the visit, the Pakistan Navy delegates held meetings with Iranian Navy and military officials and discussed mutual areas of interest.

Iranian frigate Alborz, a British-made Vosper Mark V class frigate (known as the Alvand class in Iran), was commissioned in 1971 as part of a four-ship order.

Each ship is a 1,100-ton frigate with a crew of 125-146 and maximum speeds of 39 knots. Each is armed with one five-missile Sea Killer Mark II surface-to-surface missile launcher and one Mark 8 4.5" gun mount. The Sea Killer has a relatively effective beam-riding missile with radio command or optical guidance, a maximum range of 25 kilometers, and a 70-kilogram warhead.

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