Iranian, Russian, Chinese forces to hold joint naval exercise in Persian Gulf
Naval forces from the Islamic Republic of Iran, Russia and China are set to stage a joint naval exercise in the Persian Gulf waters, where the three powerhouses will carry out large-scale maritime maneuvers involving various divisions of their military forces.
Iranian Navy Commander Rear Admiral Shahram Irani told the state-run Islamic Republic of Iran News Network (IRINN) television news channel on Friday evening that Iranian, Chinese and Russian forces will jointly practice exercises during the 2024 Marine Security Belt naval war game.
He added that delegates from Pakistan, Brazil, Oman, India, South Africa and a number of the Caspian Sea littoral states have also been invited to participate in the drills as observers.
Iranian naval forces and their Chinese and Russian counterparts have held several military drills in recent years to improve the security of international maritime trade, counter piracy and maritime terrorism, exchange information in naval rescue and relief operations, and exchange operational and tactical experiences.
Irani went on to say that the main phase of the country's largest maritime zone will come on stream at the port city of Jask in southeastern Iran during the Ten-Day Dawn celebrations marking the 46th anniversary of the victory of the Islamic Revolution.
The commander stated that heavy-lift vessels will be deployed in the maritime zone by the end of the current Iranian calendar year, which concludes on March 20, 2024.
“Given the growth in the number of operating heavy lift vessels in the country, we are planning to establish a much larger maritime zone in Konarak” in the country’s southeastern province of Sistan and Baluchestan, the Iranian Navy commander pointed out.
Rear Admiral Irani also described as “positive” the reactions of the Caspian Sea littoral states to the addition of Daylaman, the newest homegrown destroyer, to the Iranian Navy’s Caspian Sea fleet on Monday.
The military vessel, whose hull identification number is 78, officially came into operation at a ceremony in the northern port city of Bandar Anzali.
Chief of Staff of the Iranian Armed Forces Major General Mohammad Hossein Baqeri, Army Commander Major General Abdolrahim Mousavi, and Navy Commander Rear Admiral Shahram Irani attended the ceremony.
Weighing 1,500 tons, the destroyer has been designed and manufactured by the Defense Ministry under the aegis of the Navy.
Daylaman is known as the most advanced version of the Jamaran-class vessels.
Elsewhere in his remarks on Friday evening, Irani pointed to the volume of commercial transactions in the Caspian Sea, and the change in the attitude towards maritime economy and shipping in the inland body of water, hoping that Deylaman destroyer could help Iran's commercial sector.
“If we (Iran) can build a destroyer, then there would certainly be no difficulty in the development of a [homegrown] commercial vessel,” he underscored.