On December 10, India test launched its Agni-5 nuclear-capable ICBM off the Odisha coast. Indian defense sources said this was India’s seventh successful trial of the Agni-5, which was conducted by the Strategic Forces Command and Defense Research and Development Organization (DRDO) scientists. During the test, the missile’s navigation and guidance systems “guided the missile flawlessly,” according to an unnamed defense official. The Agni-5 consists of a three stage solid fueled missile that, although unconfirmed, is suspected to be paired with MIRVed warheads. The missile has a range of at least 5,000 km.
On December 9, an Indian defense release detailed a combined guided weapons exercise, dubbed Cross Bow-18, that tested four types of surface-to-air missiles (SAMs) at Suryalanka Air Force Station over the course of three days. According to the release, the Indian Air Force fired the Akash, Spyder, OSA-AK-M, and IGLA SAMs in the first combined SAM exercise of its kind. India’s Chief of Air Staff, Air Chief Marshal Birender Singh Dhanoa, praised the exercise as a “major milestone” in India’s efforts to enhance its air defense capabilities.