- The Indian and French air forces has decided to carry out a mega air exercise called as Garuda beginning July 1 in France.
- This air exercise will take place two months after Indian and French navies had carried out a naval warfare exercise called as Varuna in the Arabian Sea as well as in Djibouti on the Horn of Africa.
- This exercise will provide an opportunity for Sukhoi 30 fighter jets of the Indian Air Force(IAF) to engage in dogfights with France’s Rafale multirole aircraft in simulated scenarios.
- This will also allow IAF pilots to have a closer look at the Rafale jets being operated by the French Air Force.India had signed a deal with France in 2016 to buy 36 Rafale fighter jets.The first Rafale jet is scheduled to be delivered in September,2019.
- India and France defence and security cooperation has been on an upswing in the last few years.In 2018,two countries had inked a strategic pact providing for the use of each others military facility including opening naval bases to warships.
- India and France have been also carrying out discussions on the possibility of launching a tri-services military exercise between the armed forces of the two nations.
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