Batam, Riau Islands (ANTARA) - Indonesia and Malaysia are holding the 41st Search and Rescue (SAR) joint exercise on the maritime boundary between Bintan District, Riau Islands, and Malaysia.

"The 41st joint Malindo (Malaysia-Indonesia) exercise is held for three days, from Tuesday (September 20) to Thursday (September 22)," National Search and Rescue Agency's (Basarnas') Deputy for Operations and Preparedness, Rear Admiral Ribut Eko Suyatno, stated here on Wednesday.

Suyatno noted that the joint SAR training between the two countries was a realization of the Letters of Agreement (LoA) for the Provision of Search and Rescue Service Between Indonesia-Malaysia in 1985 and the results of the 86th Malindo Joint Exercise Committee Conference (JKLB) in Jakarta.

"This Joint SAR exercise has great benefits for both countries in ensuring safety for foreigners, Indonesians, and Malaysians in the border areas," he remarked.

A simulation of a ship accident was conducted during the joint exercise, he revealed. During the simulated accident, three out of the 15 passengers were successfully evacuated, while the rest were missing and being searched.

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"The danger signal sent off by the ship was received by the Basarnas Command Center and Malaysia's MRCC (Maritime Rescue Coordination Centre)," Suyatno explained.

Moreover, the joint SAR exercise was conducted in the form of Table Top Exercise (TTX), Tactical Floor Game (TFG), and Field Training Exercise (FTX). The FTX was conducted in the bordering waters of Bintan Island, Indonesia, and Johor Bahru, Malaysia.

Indonesia deployed four ships, namely Basarnas' vessel KN SAR Purworejo, KN Bubara from the Indonesian Military Navy (TNI AL), KN Laksmana from the Water and Air Police Corps, and KN Belut Laut from Indonesia's Coast Guard (Bakamla), while Malaysia sent three vessels.

Suyatno highlighted that the two countries, which are members of the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) and the International Maritime Organization (IMO), are obligated to provide SAR services to ships and aircraft that experience emergencies in their respective zones of responsibility, without any blank area.

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Translator: Ilham P, Kenzu T
Editor: Rahmad Nasution
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