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International crews performing flights during Russian-Indian drills for first time

Mixed crew use Su-30M2 and An-26 planes, and Mi-8AMTSh helicopters
Yuri Smetyuk/TASS
Yuri Smetyuk/TASS

VLADIVOSTOK, October 26. /TASS/. For the first time in the history of Russia’s aerospace forces, Russian and Indian pilots perform flights in mixed international crews during the Indra-2017 military exercises in Russia’s Far Eastern Primorye Territory, spokesman for the Russian Pacific Navy Nikolai Voskresensky said on Thursday.

"For the first time in the history of the Russian aerospace forces, mixed international crews, with Indian second pilots, perform flights onboard Russian aircraft at the Central Uglovaya airfield near Vladivostok as part of the Russian-Indian multi-service force drills Indra-2017. All foreign pilots have experience of piloting similar aircraft used by the Indian air force," he said.

Mixed crew use Su-30M2 and An-26 planes, and Mi-8AMTSh helicopters. About ten joint crews have already performed reconnaissance flights, took part in the landing of tactical airborne force to Sergeyevsky range and hit targets simulating the maneuver enemy’s weapon emplacements.

"Today, international crew acted in the interests of the Russian Pacific Fleet’s and Indian Navy’s warships drilling their skills in the Peter the Great Bay," Voskresensky said.

This year, the Russian-Indian maneuvers will for the first time be held in the multi-service force format. Instead of the drills Indra Navy-2016, Avia Indra-2016 and Indra-2016 held last year, maneuvers with the participation of three military branches will be held this year with the involvement of the Pacific Fleet and also aviation and land troops units of Russia’s Eastern Military District.