S'pore, India, Thailand complete 2-day naval exercise

Republic of Singapore Navy sailors on the deck of the RSS Intrepid waving during the sail-past to conclude the maritime exercise. Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, the crew of the RSS Intrepid and RSS Endeavour were isolated and tested negative for the v
Republic of Singapore Navy sailors on the deck of the RSS Intrepid waving during the sail-past to conclude the maritime exercise. Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, the crew of the RSS Intrepid and RSS Endeavour were isolated and tested negative for the virus before the exercise. PHOTO: MINISTRY OF DEFENCE

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

In a statement yesterday, 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 the 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.

Lieutenant-Colonel Oh Zongbo, commander of the exercise task group and commanding officer of the RSS Intrepid, 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."

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on November 24, 2020, with the headline 'S'pore, India, Thailand complete 2-day naval exercise'. Print Edition | Subscribe