Soon after Russia handed over the refurbished aircraft carrier INS Vikramaditya to India, both the nations have decided to hold joint military exercises in 2014 to boost their strategic ties, according to a release by the Ministry of Defence.
The decision was made during the 13th Meeting of the India - Russia Inter-Governmental Commission on Military Technical Cooperation (IRIGC-MTC) on Monday.
"India and Russia have agreed to expand the range of their strategic partnership in a significant manner," The New Indian Express quoted a Union Ministry of Defence spokesperson.
A joint Navy Exercise in the Peter the Great Bay in the Sea of Japan will also be held in 2014. Recently, the Armies of the two countries held Exercise Indra in Rajasthan, where they carried out various military drills.
During the meeting, Sergey Shoigu, Defence Minister of Russia also assured India that the naval aviation specialists will train Indian pilots for take- offs and landing on INS Vikramaditya. These military exercises are likely to be held in Goa.
The meeting was co- chaired by A K Antony, Defence Minister of India and his counterpart Shoigu. IRIGC-MTC was set up 13 years ago to review military ties, joint ventures in defence production and status of various projects between India and Russia. India's 70 per cent of the defence systems comes from Russian and erstwhile Soviet Union. The meeting is held between the defence ministers of both the nations every year alternatively in New Delhi and Moscow.
The two Ministers have also agreed that there is a need for further cooperation at all levels, especially in view of the regional and global challenges and to fight the menace of terrorism jointly. Both sides reviewed the situation in West Asia, especially in Syria and the evolving paradigm in Afghanistan.
The Meeting also reviewed issues relating to T-90 tanks and SU-30 projects.