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November 28, 2006

Pakistan Navy’s Seaspark exercise begins


November 28, 2006

KARACHI: The Pakistan Navy has started its biannual maritime exercise “SEASPARK-2006” to be conducted in the North Arabian Sea, said a spokesman for the Pakistan Navy on Monday.

According to an Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) press release, Admiral Muhammad Afzal Tahir, the Chief of the Naval Staff (CNS), Pakistan Navy, and other senior naval officers attended the opening brief of the exercise which was held at Pakistan Navy Tactical School, PN Dockyard.

“The prime objective of the exercise is to assess the operational readiness of Pakistan Navy, besides being aimed at determining the command articulation of the newly-raised Coastal Command comprising the Special Services Group (SSG)and Pak Marines”, it was pointed out in the briefing.

Rear-Admiral Shahid Iqbal, the Deputy-Chief of Naval Staff (Operations), speaking on the occasion, said that Pakistan was pursuing cordial and peaceful relations with all regional countries.

“The ongoing CBMs with India are testimony to our pledge for promoting peace and stability in the region”, he remarked and added, “It is, however, considered imperative to have strong and well-prepared armed forces since weakness invites aggression.”

He said that the experiences gained during deployment in Coalition Maritime Campaign Plan (CMCP), a component of global war on terror, and command of the Multinational Task Force-150 by the Pakistan Navy would be suitably adapted during the exercise to draw pertinent lessons and evolve a strategy to counter present-day maritime threat.

The exercise involves participation of all available Pakistan Navy units including surface combatants, submarines, aviation assets, Special Services Group, and Pak Marines. Besides, the supporting elements of Pakistan Army and Pakistan Air Force would also take part in the exercise, he said.

The participating units of Pakistan Navy have been suitably allocated for the exercise to Blue and Orange

forces headed by Rear-Admiral Asaf Humayun, and Rear- Admiral Noman Bashir, respectively. The force commanders briefed the audience on their plans of action and strategies.

Earlier, the officer conducting the exercise enlightened the audience with salient features of the exercise. He said that the exercise would be conducted in four phases included preparatory, mobilisation, war at sea, and the analysis phase.

The mobilisation of forces has already started which would be followed by equipment monitoring and the weapons and the sensors evaluation.It is worth mentioning that the SEASPARK series of exercises has been an important feature of Pakistan Navy’s operational preparedness since 1979, when, due to Pakistan’s withdrawal from CENTO in 1978, the MIDLINK series of maritime exercises was discontinued.

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