Exercise Veer Guardian 2023

The Indian Air Force (IAF) contingent is at Hyakuri Air Base, Japan for the Exercise Veer Guardian 2023 which is being held with the Japan Air Self Defence Force (JASDF) from 12 to 26 Jan 2023. This is the 1st bilateral exercise between the two nations.

The IAF is participating with 04 Su-30 MKI fighter jets, 02 C-17 III Globemasters and an IL-78 MKI tanker. The JASDF is participating with 04 F-15J and 04 F-2 fighters among other aircrafts.

IAF crew interacting with F-2 fighter jet

The pilots of the both Air forces are gaining familiarity with each other and their steeds in skies of Japan. The IAF pilots switched cockpits with their counterparts and also shared their experiences.

The IAF pilots also flew Mitsubishi F2 (Viper Zero) of JASDF. The F-2 of JASDF is a derived version of F-16 Fighting Falcon also used by Pakistan Air Force. The F-2 is actually bigger and heavier than the F-16. The F-2 is specifically developed for Japan and only 94 were produced.

Japanese pilots in Su-30MKI

India and Japan agreed to step up bilateral defence cooperation and engage in more military exercises, including holding of the first joint fighter jet drills, during the second ‘2+2 Foreign and Defence Ministerial’ dialogue in Tokyo in September.


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