KARACHI: A Pakistan Navy task group — comprising PN ship Shahjahan, Submarine Saad, and two fast attack missile crafts Quwwat and Azmat along with a maritime patrol aircraft — recently participated in a bilateral exercise with Oman.
The Thamar Al Tayyib Exercise — held in both Pakistan and Oman waters alternately — has been conducted biennially between Pakistan Navy and the Royal Navy of Oman since 2002. This year is its ninth edition. The exercise is undertaken to enhance interoperability and collaborative efforts towards maritime security with the ultimate aim of promoting peace in the region.
The ninth edition saw joint planning and coordination in the harbour followed by execution of the planned serials at sea, which included maritime security, anti-air and anti-surface exercises. The exercise was witnessed by senior officials from both navies. Karachi Commander Vice Admiral Asif Khaliq represented the Pakistan Navy.
The exercise culminated with a debriefing wherein Vice Admiral Khaliq expressed his satisfaction on the successful conduction of the exercise and thanked the Royal Navy of Oman for hosting the Pakistan Navy units. The RNO officials also expressed gratitude to the PN for sending its task group and making the exercise successful.
Apart from professional interactions, Pakistan Navy Ship Shahjahan also hosted a reception on board which was attended by a large gathering of diplomats, government and military officials, and officers from the Sultan Armed Forces besides distinguished guests from local and Pakistani community. Pakistan and Sultanate of Oman enjoy longstanding brotherly ties based on cultural affinity and religious bond. Being close maritime neighbours, Pakistan and Oman share common interests in ensuring maritime security and the free flow of commerce through the region.
Accordingly, the navies of both countries have been cooperating on a wide range of issues in the maritime domain. Both Pakistan Navy and the Royal Navy of Oman have been regularly participating in maritime security operations at sea. In the area of human resource, PN is providing officers and men on deputation to RNO to support it in fulfilling its maritime and naval obligations. The two navies have also been closely collaborating in the training of officers.
Published in Dawn, January 19th, 2019