New Delhi/Port Blair, Feb 9 IANS | 9 months ago

India and 16 other countries took part in the biennial naval exercises "Milan 2014" that concluded in Port Blair Sunday.

The culmination of the six-day exercises hosted by the Indian Navy saw ships manoeuvering in harmony in the Andaman sea, a defence ministry release said in New Delhi.

Air Marshal P.K. Roy, commander-in-chief of the Andaman and Nicobar Command, presided over the concluding function.

"Milan 2014" was the biggest edition of the exercise since its inception in 1995. The event started Feb 4, the release said.

Countries from the western Indian Ocean region took part in the event for the first time. The Philippines and Cambodia also participated for the first time.

The countries which took part included Australia, Bangladesh, Indonesia, Kenya, Malaysia, the Maldives, Mauritius, Myanmar, New Zealand, Seychelles, Singapore, Sri Lanka, Tanzania and Thailand.

"The past few days have seen maritime forces of these nations come closer professionally and culturally cementing friendship and building confidence in inter-operability," the release said.

Bangladesh, Indonesia, Myanmar and the Philippines shared their recent experiences in handling disasters at a seminar on humanitarian assistance and disaster relief.

Chief of Naval Staff Admiral D.K. Joshi also addressed the seminar.

"Milan, with its emphasis on building friendship and understanding between personnel at the tactical level, also presented ample opportunities for the sailors to build personal bonds and friendships," the release said.

(Posted on 09-02-2014)

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