US and Saudi Arabia troops in joint naval 'Indigo Defender-21' drills

Exercises included simulations of fighting in residential areas, beach training, combat patrols and mine removal

Members of Saudi Arabia's Royal Naval Forces and the American Navy continued joint exercises on Saturday, Saudi state media reported.

The “Indigo Defender-21" military drills began last week on Sunday.

Saudi exercise commander Admiral Mansour bin Saud Al Juaid, said the 10-day manoeuvres were aimed at bolstering US-Saudi military co-operation and increasing bilateral combat readiness.

“The exercise is meant to reinforce relations and military cooperation between Saudi and US forces and to exchange expertise and abilities in port protection and the removal of mines above and under water,” Admiral Al Juaid said at a press conference during the launch.

“The drills are also for protecting regional and international waterways to guarantee free maritime travel along the Red Sea.”

Saudi Arabia's Ministry of Defence showcased some of the military activities in a short video it posted on its Twitter account on Friday.

The military activities included simulations of fighting in residential areas, storming of buildings and beach training and tactical scenarios involving naval units, support boats, landing ships and helicopters, the Saudi Press Agency reported.

Earlier this year, the US Naval Forces Central Command said it participated in the “largest Nautical Defender exercises” alongside Saudi and British forces.

The drills lasted for 10 days, running from January 20-29, in the Arabian Gulf.

Updated: October 24th 2021, 8:52 AM