Singapore, India and Thailand navies complete two-day maritime exercise

The Republic of Singapore Navy, Indian Navy and Royal Thai Navy conducting manoeuvring drills during Sitmex 2020.
The Republic of Singapore Navy, Indian Navy and Royal Thai Navy conducting manoeuvring drills during Sitmex 2020.PHOTO: MINISTRY OF DEFENCE

SINGAPORE - The Republic of Singapore Navy (RSN) has successfully hosted the second Singapore-India-Thailand Maritime Exercise (Sitmex).

In a statement on Monday (Nov 23), the Ministry of Defence (Mindef) said the exercise took place from Saturday to Sunday in the Andaman Sea.

A total of five vessels were involved, including RSN's Formidable-class frigate RSS Intrepid and the Endurance-class landing ship tank RSS Endeavour.

The Indian Navy deployed its Kamorta-class corvette INS Kamorta and the Kora-class corvette INS Karmuk, while the Royal Thai Navy was represented by the Chao Phraya-class frigate HTMS Kraburi.

Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, the crew of RSN's RSS Intrepid and RSS Endeavour were isolated and tested negative for the virus before they were deployed for the exercise.

The exercise was also planned virtually and conducted only at sea. No physical contact between personnel of the participating navies took place, said Mindef.

During the two-day exercise, the ships executed gunnery and small arms firings, manoeuvring drills, communications exercises and naval warfare serials.

Commander of the exercise task group and commanding officer of RSS Intrepid, Lieutenant-Colonel Oh Zongbo, highlighted the importance of navies continuing to engage one another amid Covid-19 challenges.

He said: "Sitmex serves as a useful exercise for the three like-minded navies to enhance our inter-operability in maritime operations.

"The ability to execute and conduct these operations together is a testament to the longstanding ties and trust that we have established with one another."