Indian warship arrives in Ho Chi Minh City

By Thanh Nguyen   September 28, 2018 | 02:00 pm GMT+7
Indian warship arrives in Ho Chi Minh City
Indian destroyer Ins Rana arrives in Ho Chi Minh City on Thursday. Photo by VnExpress/Thanh Nguyen

Destroyer INS Rana of the Indian navy arrived at Saigon Port Thursday for a three-day visit.

The vessel, a Rajput-class destroyer commissioned in 1982, has come with a crew of more than 300 to Vietnam’s southern city as part of the Indian navy’s operational deployment in the South China Sea, known as the East Sea in Vietnam, and the northwestern Pacific.

The destroyer is 146.5 meters long, has a beam of 15.8 meters and a helipad, and is equipped with anti-aircraft and anti-submarine missiles.

The vessel will carry out communications and coordination exercises at sea with Vietnamese naval vessels during its stay.

Colonel Atul Dawel, the captain of the destroyer, said the visit this time "will strengthen the bonds and friendship between the two countries and contribute to security and stability in the region and the world."

Vietnamese Navy officers visit the Indian ship on Thursday. Photo by VnExpress/Thanh Nguyen

Vietnamese Navy officers visit the Indian ship on Thursday. Photo by VnExpress/Thanh Nguyen

This is the second time this year the Indian navy has sent a vessel to Vietnam after a fleet of three Indian ships with 900 officers and sailors arrived at Tien Sa Port, Da Nang, in May.

From HCMC, INS Rana will sail to South Korea for the International Fleet Review to be held at a naval base on Jeju Island from October 10 to 14. Vietnamese frigate Tran Hung Dao will also attend the event.

Over the course of less than a month a number of foreign naval vessels have made port calls in Vietnam.

South Korean destroyer ROKS Moon Mu the Great (DDH-976) docked in the central city of Da Nang on September 11 and Japanese Maritime Self Defense Force vessel Kuroshio arrived at Cam Ranh Port on September 18. 

They were followed by Canadian ship HMCS Calgary that came to Da Nang on September 26, and Royal New Zealand Navy frigate HMNZS Te Mana which arrived in Saigon Tuesday for a four-day visit.

Carl Thayer, an Australia-based regional security analyst, said about the port calls: "All maritime powers have a national interest in the maintenance of freedom of navigation and overflight over the high seas. The sea lanes that pass through the South China Sea are vital sea lines of communications that sustain the global economy."

Some $3 trillion worth of ship-borne trade passes through the waterway annually.

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