New Delhi: With India stepping up its ties with Israel, the Indian Air Force (IAF) will take part in the Blue Flag exercise to be held during November this year in Israel. This will be the largest multi-national exercise in Israel where the US, Italy, France, Germany, Greece, and Poland will take part.
For the first time, IAF fighter jets will participate in the two-week exercise. The biennial exercise began in 2013 and continued in 2015 with the participation of the US, Greece and Poland. This year, close to 100 fighter aircraft of eight air forces are expected to conduct advanced sorties involving air-to-air battles, air-to-ground attacks with high-level maneuvering. Apart from fighter jets, nearly 35 countries are expected to attend as observers to the Blue Flag exercise.
In June this year, more than 55 Indian defense firms had participated at the ISDEF exhibition in Tel Aviv. This was the highest participation ever by Indian firms at this exhibition.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi became the first ever Indian PM earlier this month to visit Israel, which was considered a tectonic shift in India’s West Asia policy. A large number leader of Indian defense firms had accompanied Modi where they signed 12 strategic agreements ranging from air defense systems, radars, antiship missiles to medium-altitude long endurance UAVs in India under technology transfer deals worth $4.3 billion during the first formal meeting of India-Israel CEOs forum in Tel Aviv.