RNO and PN conducted the Thamar-al-Tayyib 2014 exercise from December 14-18, in which PN ships Aslat, Dehshat, Jurrat and Pakistan MSA ship Nusrat participated.
The Task Group was commanded by Commodore Suhail Hameed SI(M), Commander of the 9th Auxiliary and Mine Warfare Squadron of PN. It was the biggest exercise of its series, he told Muscat Daily.
“Oman and Pakistan enjoy a very close relationship. The exercise was aimed to improve interoperability between the two navies, strengthen bilateral ties and learn from each other’s expertise through joint conduct of drills and exercises at sea.”
He added, “This year our participation was a hallmark as long range maritime patrol aircraft also participated in the exercise. Secondly, we came with four ships this time and it is the biggest participation of the series. Three out of the four ships are made in Pakistan. They have substantial fire power and are mainstay of PN. RNO also reciprocated with participation of their latest ship, RNOV Rasikh along with other ships.”
He said, “Warfare is changing very rapidly, it has now become asymmetric due to terrorism threat, piracy and illegal activities at the sea.”
Speaking on piracy, Commadore Hameed said, “I can confirm that there has been a substantial reduction in the activities at sea, mainly because of increased number of naval platforms contributed by regional and extra regional navies. But I fear that piracy may reoccur as pirate network still exists in Somalia and hold a potential threat. Until they are taken to task the threat looms.”