Indian Air Force to Send Sukhoi to Australia For Multilateral Drill

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IAF Su-30MKI

Indian air force conducted exercise Gagan Shakti which was conducted on both fronts and even it was told that Chinese intelligence agencies were trying to spy on them. Just after few months, IAF has announced that it is sending Sukhoi for participating in multilateral air exercise pitch black in 2018. It is the biggest air combat program in the southern hemisphere and it has several other countries too.

India will send atleast 4-5 fighter planes and one C-17 transporter will be sent to Australia in July. In 2015, Manohar Parikkar and Kevin Andrews, the then defence minister of Australia met and decided that IAF will attend pitch black in 2016 but later IAF was busy in operational issues and could not attend.

The countries which attend the pitch black exercise include US, UK, Singapore, Thailand, France, Malaysia, New Zealand, UAE, Canada, Germany and Netherlands.

The manoeuvres which are largely practiced in stretches of Northern Australia, is to learn about offensive air control and defensive counter air combat.

It should be noted that India and Australia relations are on the rise and the two air forces have been taking part in exercises since 2015.