Riding on the newfound zest in China-Nepal relations, the two nations will hold joint military exercises for the second time in two years. To bolster China-Nepal relations across the dimensions of defence and security, the second edition of joint military exercises is scheduled from September 17. This joint military programme is aimed at sharing expertise in terms of disaster management and counter-terrorism.
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The Nepal Army has a long history of joint military exercise with its traditional ally India and also the United States. Now Nepal seems keen to hold such military exercises with the People’s Liberation Army of China as well, to extend military diplomacy.
The joint military drill between Nepal and China which is called ‘Sagarmatha Friendship-2’ which will begin on September 17th in Chengdu. Chengdu is the capital of China’s southwestern province of Sichuan. Around 15 members each from both the armies are expected to take part in this joint military drill. The first edition of the joint military exercise between Nepal and China was held in Nepal’s Maharajgunj in April last year.
This will be a platoon level training and will be led by captains from both the sides. The national defence force of Nepal described this joint military exercise as a part of the regular efforts undertaken to bolster bilateral and multilateral military relations. This military exercise will be about sharing of experiences and the skill and knowledge related to countering terrorism and facilitating disaster management operations.
Since the last 13 years, Nepal has been involved in joint military training with the Indian Army at the battalion levels. This joint military training between India and Nepal is called the ‘Surya Kiran.’ Now with Nepal showing interest in building military cooperation with China which has been at loggerheads with India over several territorial disputes, New Delhi will surely be watching anxiously.