No snooping on Chinese warships: Navy | delhi | Hindustan Times
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No snooping on Chinese warships: Navy

The sources in the Indian Navy denied reports that an Indian submarine was “locked in a tense standoff” with Chinese destroyers on January 15.

delhi Updated: Feb 05, 2009 13:26 IST
HT Correspondent

The Indian Navy has been accused of snooping on Chinese warships deployed in the Gulf of Aden to fight Somali pirates. An Indian Kilo class submarine was reportedly trying to obtain crucial naval data from China’s two most advanced warships before it was forced to surface, a Hong Kong newspaper has reported.

But sources in the Indian Navy denied reports that an Indian submarine was “locked in a tense standoff” with Chinese destroyers on January 15. The warships reportedly came close to a confrontation in the Bab al-Mandab Strait that separates Yemen and Djibouti.

A senior official said the navy did keep track of warships transiting close to the Indian waters but denied that the Chinese destroyers intercepted an Indian submarine. The Indian Navy is believed to have kept track of the Chinese warships when they transited the Strait of Malacca on way to the Gulf of Aden.

The South China Morning Post said the standoff was triggered after the Chinese warships picked up an unidentified submarine on their sonar, a sound technique used in navigation, communication or detecting other vessels.

The warships, the report said, identified a 70-metre-long vessel armed with 20 torpedoes, which tried to evade them by diving deeper. When the submarine allegedly tried to jam the warships’ sonar system, the Chinese navy scrambled an anti-submarine helicopter to track it. The warships had their torpedoes ready.