Indian Ocean Naval Symposium Current Affairs - 2019
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The 10th anniversary celebration of Indian Ocean Naval Symposium (IONS) was held in Kochi, Kerela. The two-day seminar aims to discuss maritime issues pertaining to cooperative capacity-building to deal with common security concerns in the region. The theme for this year’s seminar was “IONS as Catalyst for SAGAR’. SAGAR stands for ‘Security and Growth for All in the Region’. It is in consonance with India’s ‘Act East’ policy and nation’s diplomatic, economic and military outreach in the region.
Indian Ocean Naval Symposium (IONS)
It is voluntary regional forum that seeks to increase maritime co-operation among navies of littoral states of the Indian Ocean Region by providing open and inclusive forum for discussion of regionally relevant maritime issues. It endeavours to generate flow of information between naval professionals that would lead to common understanding and possibly cooperative solutions on way ahead.
Under charter of business adopted in 2014, it has working groups on Humanitarian Assistance and Disaster Relief (HADR), Information Security and Interoperability (IS&I) and anti-piracy now renamed as maritime security. It was launched in 2008 by India Navy, since then biennial meetings among the littoral states are held.
It has total 35 member nations grouped into four sub-regions.
- South Asian Littorals: India, Bangladesh, Maldives, Pakistan, Seychelles and Sri Lanka
- West Asian Littorals: Bahrain, Iran, Iraq, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, UAE and Yemen
- East African Littorals: Comoros, Djibouti, Egypt, Eriteria, France, Kenya, Madagascar, Mauritius, Mozambique, Somalia, South Africa, Sudan and Tanzania
- South East Asian and Australian Littorals: Australia, Indonesia, Malaysia, Myanmar, Singapore, Thailand and Timor Leste.
- Observer Countries: China, Germany, Italy, Japan, Madagascar, Malaysia, Netherlands, Russia and Spain.
The 2017 International Multilateral Maritime Search and Rescue Exercise (IMMSAREX) was held in Bangladesh from November 26 to 28 2017.
The exercise is taking place under the aegis of Indian Ocean Naval Symposium (IONS). It was inaugurated by Prime Minister of Bangladesh Sheikh Hasina.
From India, Navy Chief Admiral Sunil Lanba participated in the exercise to consolidate bilateral naval relations between India and Bangladesh and to explore new avenues for naval cooperation. Indian Naval Ships (INS) Ranvir, Sahyadri, Gharial and Sukanya along with one Maritime Patrol Aircraft P-8I participatied in the exercise.
Extraordinary Conclave of Chiefs (ECoC)’ meeting of IONS was also held. It focussed upon activities being undertaken by IONS in-addition to review progress made by three IONS Working Group (IWG)- Humanitarian Assistance and Disaster relief (HADR), Maritime Security and Information Exchange and Interoperability. The ships and aircraft of IONS members and observers including China (has observer status) and Pakistan also participated in exercise.
Indian Ocean Naval Symposium (IONS)
The IONS is regional forum of Indian Ocean littoral states launched by India Navy in February 2008. It is voluntary initiative that seeks to increase maritime co-operation among navies of littoral states of Indian Ocean Region (IOR) by providing an open and inclusive forum for discussion of regionally relevant maritime issues.
It endeavours to generate flow of information between naval professionals that would lead to common understanding and possibly cooperative solutions on way ahead. There are 35 members – navies of IONS represented by heads of their navies. Under IONS charter of business adopted in 2014, the forum has working groups on HADR, IS&I and maritime security (anti-piracy).