An ongoing Indo-US joint exercise, named TARKASH, has for the first time included “Chemical, Biological, Radiological and Nuclear (CBRN) terror response” in its drill.
GS III: Security challenges
Dimensions of the Article:
- About TARKASH
- About CBRN weapons
- TARKASH is a joint exercise conducted by the National Security Guard (NSG) and US Special Operations Forces (SOF) in Chennai, Tamil Nadu.
- The exercise has included a drill for Chemical, Biological, Radiological, and Nuclear (CBRN) terror response in light of the recent Russia-Ukraine conflict.
- Sources state that the CBRN terror response drill involved IAF helicopters inserting small teams into the target area, successful intervention in a large auditorium, rescue of hostages, and neutralization of the chemical agent weapon.
- The exercise also featured a mock drill for terrorist organizations armed with chemical agents and threatening to attack a convention hall during an international summit.
- The objective of the joint exercise was to rapidly neutralize the terrorists, rescue hostages safely, and deactivate the chemical weapons carried by the terrorists.
About CBRN weapons
- CBRN weapons, or chemical, biological, radiological, and nuclear weapons, have the potential to cause mass casualties and disruption, and are classified as weapons of mass destruction.
- Chemical weapons include mustard gas and nerve agents, while biological agents include anthrax and botulinum toxin. Radiological weapons include nuclear weapons and dirty bombs.
- CBRN weapons have been used by several countries and terrorist organisations.
- The first instance of their use can be traced back to World War I.
- After the war, countries came together to sign the Geneva Protocol to prohibit the use of these weapons.
- However, numerous countries violated the treaty, including Italy in Ethiopia, Nazi Germany in concentration camps, and the US in Vietnam.
- Iraq used chemical weapons against Iran and its Kurdish minority during the Iran-Iraq war.
- In 2013, the Syrian army carried out a sarin gas attack against civilians during the Syrian Civil War, resulting in hundreds of deaths.
- The attack highlighted the continued use of these weapons despite international prohibitions.
-Source: Indian Express