MOSCOW (AFP) - The Russian and Indian navies will take part in joint manoeuvres in the Indian Ocean in January 2009, the RIA Novosti news agency quoted a Russian Pacific fleet naval spokesman as saying. "A detachment from the Pacific fleet led by the missile cruiser Variag will leave Vladivostok in December and leave for the Indian Ocean for joint exercises with the Indian navy," said Captain Roman Martov. The ships will then be joined by warships taking part in November exercises with the Venezuelan navy, he said. India is an important buyer of Russian military hardware and is due to receive a refurbished a Soviet-era aircraft carrier - the Admiral Gorshkov - in 2011.