Following the SA Navy’s participation in the International Fleet Review staged by the Indian Navy earlier this year, as well as Exercise Ibsamar, South Africa’s navy chief has been thanked for the contribution made by the country’s sailors.
A letter to Vice Admiral Mosiwa Hlongwane from Admiral RK Dhowan, Indian Navy Chief of Naval Staff, writes “your [Hlongwane’s] presence at the event along with SAS Spioenkop was truly in keeping with the theme of the review ‘United through Oceans’ and was testimony to the warm relations and strong bonds between the two navies”.
“The ship and its crew were true ambassadors of the Republic of South Africa and contributed significantly to the event’s success”.
On Ibsamar, the Indian Chief of Naval Staff stated “the exercise once again proved to be an effective operational platform to enhance inter-operability between our navies”.
“The unprecedented conduct of the exercise in Indian waters provided the opportunity to operate on a different maritime environment and I am sure the lessons learnt will further contribute in refining our operational procedures for future editions.”
Ibsamar took place after the International Fleet Review in Visakhapatnam and saw the Brazilian Navy, in the form of one of its OPVs, BNS Amazonas, join Spioenkop and a number of Indian vessels for various tasks including search and rescue, boarding, replenishment at sea and surface picture compilation using a SA Air Force Super Lynx maritime helicopter embarked on the Spioenkop.
Ibsamar’s main objective is, according to the SA Navy website, promotion of south-south dialogue, co-operation and the adoption of common positions on issues of international importance.