Multi-lateral air force Exercise Desert Flag VI concludes - Broadsword by Ajai Shukla - Strategy. Economics. Defence.

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Saturday, 27 March 2021

Multi-lateral air force Exercise Desert Flag VI concludes

Underlining the growing security ties between India and the UAE, the IAF participated in Desert Flag for the first time, fielding Sukhoi-30MKI fighters


Exercise Desert Flag–VI -- an annual, multi-lateral, large force employment exercise hosted by the United Arab Emirates (UAE) -- successfully culminated today. This was the sixth edition of the exercise, conducted from 04 Mar to 27 Mar 21 at Al Dhafra Air Force Base , UAE.

Underlining the growing security ties between India and the UAE, the Indian Air Force (IAF) participated in the exercise for the first time, fielding Sukhoi-30MKI fighter aircraft. 

Six countries -- the UAE, USA, France, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain and  India -- participated with aerial assets. Jordan, Greece, Qatar, Egypt and South Korea participated as observer forces.


The objectives for the exercise were to expose coalition participating forces to large force employment, sharpen tactical capabilities, and enhance interoperability; along with fostering closer relations between the participating forces.

The aim for the participating crew and specialist observers was to expose them to operational environment in scenarios requiring multinational forces working together. Timely and seamless induction and de-induction was facilitated by IAF C-17 Globe master aircraft.

During the exercise IAF flew Large Force Engagement (LFE) missions in near realistic environment involving many aircraft of varied types. IAF successfully undertook all the planned missions, both by day and night, without any mission abort.  All possible assistance was provided by UAE Air Force ensuring that all planned activities were completed in time.

IAF has been actively participating in operational international exercises, enhancing collaborative engagements. 

"A multinational exercise in UAE with friendly forces afforded a unique opportunity to gain valuable learning to all the participating forces. The knowledge gained, lessons learnt and bonds made during the course of Ex Desert Flag-VI will go a long way in bolstering professional capabilities of the participating forces," stated the Indian defence ministry in an official release on Saturday.

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