On March 13 and 14, 2023, the multilateral cooperation exercise La Perouse brought together seven nations involved in maritime security in the Indo-Pacific: India, Australia, Canada, the United States, France, Japan and the United Kingdom. Eight ships and seven aircraft came together in the Bay of Bengal to conduct a series of high-level training exercises to strengthen interoperability between the partner navies. France was represented by the Jeanne d’Arc Group.
Navy ships FNS Dixmude and La Fayette, INS Sahyadri, INS Jyoti, USS Charleston, HMS Tamar, HMAS Perth and JS Suzutsuki gathered on the morning of March 13, to start the first manoeuvres together. They kicked off with replenishment at sea between the INS Jyoti and the HMAS Perth, followed by a gunnery exercise on floating targets in formation. The training continued with a series of cross-decks conducted by the Dauphin and Gazelle helicopters of the Jeanne d’Arc group, the Alouette III helicopter of the INS Sahyadri, the MH160 of the USS Charleston, and the SH160 of the JS Suzutsuki. The first day ended with a joint anti-air warfare exercise.
The next day, the units conducted a simulation of air defence exercises, followed by aviation manoeuvres of increasing complexity between the helicopters and the ships, before concluding with an advanced tactical evolution exercise in formation, under the surveillance of the P8 Indian maritime patrol aircraft. Finally, the commanders of the various ships involved met on board the French Navy’s LHD Dixmude for a review of the exercise.
The eight ships then separated to continue their respective patrols and missions in the Indian Ocean. The Dixmude and the La Fayette are heading for Singapore, the next stage of their circumnavigation, before participating in the major exercise CROIX DU SUD in New Caledonia, and to conduct patrols in France’s Exclusive Economic Zones in the Indo-Pacific.
In the space of 48 hours, about ten training sequences were carried out, including twenty cross-decks. These numerous sequences enhanced mutual knowledge between our navies, contributing to maintaining international stability based on adherence to international maritime law and safety at sea.