India’s Chief of Air Staff visits South Africa

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India’s Air Chief Marshal Vivek Ram Chaudhari, Chief of the Air Staff, recently visited South Africa where he engaged with his local counterpart in an effort to strengthen military ties between India and South Africa.

Chaudhari was in South Africa from 6 to 10 May, and his visit included presentations of Air Force Bases Ysterplaat, Overberg, and Langebaanweg, showcasing the capabilities and advancements of the South African Air Force. “A highlight of the visit was the tour of the SA Air Force Museum Ysterplaat Hanger 4, where heritage aircraft are displayed, symbolising the rich history and valour of the air forces of both nations,” wrote Lieutenant Colonel James V du Toit for the South African Air Force (SAAF).

“The collaboration between India and South Africa is not just limited to military prowess but extends to a shared vision of peace, stability, and prosperity in their respective regions and beyond. The visit underscored the commitment of both countries to work together in various domains, including defence, trade, and cultural exchange, to foster a relationship that would benefit not just the two nations, but the global community as a whole,” du Toit continued.

The recent visit by the Chief of the Air Staff of India has laid the groundwork for a robust partnership that will undoubtedly contribute to regional stability and open new avenues for bilateral cooperation,” the SAAF said.

SAAF Chief, Lieutenant General Wiseman Mbambo, visited Chaudhari in India during a November 2021 goodwill tour that also took in meetings with the heads of the Indian Navy and Army.

India and South Africa witness frequent high level military visits, as well as training exchanges, military exercises and sharing of each other’s good practices. This includes Exercise IBSAMAR, a series of major naval exercises between the navies of South Africa, India and Brazil held biannually since 2008. Indian Navy warships are also regular visitors to South Africa.