March 14, 2024 Special Dispatch No. 11200

Hizbullah-Affiliated Media Outlet Al-Mayadeen: Iran, China, Russia Launched Joint Naval Drill To Forge 'Maritime Community With A Collective Destiny'

March 14, 2024
Iran, Lebanon, Russia, China | Special Dispatch No. 11200

Between March 11 and 15, Iran, China, and Russia executed a joint naval exercise dubbed "Marine Security Belt 2024," also known in English as "Security Bond-2024." Among the Iranian-produced ships that participated in the exercises were three warships, identified as Shahid Mahmoudi, Shahid Soleimani, and Shahid Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis, as well as the Tondar-class Shahid Tavassoli frigate and other IRGC naval fast attack boats. The Russian contingent was made up of two Pacific Fleet ships, the Slava-class guided missile cruiser Varyag and the Udaloy-class frigate Marshal Shaposhnikov. According to the Chinese Defense Ministry, the People's Liberation Army Navy has dispatched the guided-missile destroyer Urumqi, the guided-missile frigate Linyi, and the supply ship Dongpinghu.[1] In total, the exercise involves more than 20 ships, support ships, and warships of the Russian Navy, the Iranian Navy, and PLA Navy.[2]

Reporting about the drills, Russian media outlet RT wrote: "The exercise area is near the entrance to the Persian Gulf, where much of the world's oil deliveries originate from. On the other side of the Arabian Peninsula, off the coast of Yemen, the U.S. and its allies have deployed multiple warships in an effort to stop the Houthis from interdicting Israeli-related maritime trade. Not only have they been unsuccessful, but the Houthis have since added British and American merchant vessels to their list of targets."[3]

Hizbullah-affiliated media outlet Al-Mayadeen reported that, according to IRGC Admiral Nozari, along with demonstrative efforts to "enhance regional security," the war games aim at strengthening multilateral cooperation and "forging a maritime community with a collective destiny."

Following is the article from Al-Mayadeen:[4]

Iran, China, Russia launched their joint naval drill. This is their fifth common military exercise in recent years. (Source: Twitter)

Russian missile cruiser Varyag launches an anti-ship cruise missile P-1000 Vulkan during an exercise. (Source: Russian Defence Ministry via Sputnik)

"The Exercise Covers An area Of 17,000  Square Kilometers"

"Three [Iran's] domestically produced warships participated in the recent joint naval and airborne exercises with China and Russia, dubbed Security Belt 2024, which are taking place in the Gulf of Oman and the Indian Ocean between March 11 and 15.

"The Commander of the IRGC Navy's Imam Ali Base in Chabahar, Rear Admiral Mohammad Nozari, identified the warships as Shahid Mahmoudi, Shahid Soleimani, and Shahid Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis, in addition to the Tondar-class Shahid Tavassoli frigate and other IRGC naval fast attack boats.

"Admiral Nozari revealed that the exercise covers an area of 17 thousand square kilometers and spans across three of the world's five strategic straits located in the northern Indian Ocean region; a crucial global hub for energy and maritime traffic.

"He said the military vessels operated alongside IRGC sea helicopters and marine forces in the war games.

"The ships are equipped with locally manufactured advanced munitions and can sail for prolonged periods to carry out long-haul missions.

"The senior military official noted that the IRGC warships, equipped with indigenously manufactured sophisticated munitions, can undertake long-haul missions in oceans and open seas and ensure prolonged naval presence.

"The drills included, among others, Russia's Varyag missile cruiser and the Marshal Shapashnikov frigate as well as China's Urumqi guided missile destroyer and the Linyi guided missile frigate.

"According to Admiral Nozari, along with demonstrative efforts to 'enhance regional security,' the war games aim at strengthening multilateral cooperation and 'forging a maritime community with a collective destiny.'"

"The Drill Includes A Range Of Tactical Maneuvers"

"On his part, drill spokesperson Admiral Mostafa Tajeddini said that the drill's main object is to bolster 'the security of international maritime trade, combating piracy and maritime terrorism.' 'We have been saying for years that the security of the northern Indian Ocean should be maintained by regional countries and those with any interests there. We have taken on this pivotal role for the past five years and we have been working alongside our two friend countries – Russia and China,' he said. 'This year, several countries have sent observers, and we hope to expand this kind of cooperation with the regional countries in order to increase security and to fight against sea terrorism and piracy,' Tajeddini added.

"He also mentioned that the drill includes a range of tactical maneuvers, including extinguishing fires on vessels, freeing hijacked merchant ships, targeting specific objectives, carrying out nighttime aerial target operations, and various other tactical and operational exercises.

"Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, Oman, Pakistan, and South Africa have all sent delegations to participate in the exercise as observers.

"Iran's Navy in recent years has achieved unprecedented self-sufficiency in manufacturing surface and sub-surface vessels. It has also expanded its presence in international waters to safeguard naval routes and ensure the security of merchant vessels and tankers.

"The Iranian naval forces have frequently conducted military drills with various countries, including Russia, China, and Pakistan, to enhance their combat readiness."


[1], March 11, 2024.

[2], March 13, 2024.

[3], March 11, 2024.

[4], March 14, 2024.

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