Quad Current Affairs - 2020

India-Indonesia Defence Ministers Dialogue

On July 27, 2020, Defence Ministers Dialogue was held in New Delhi between India and Indonesia. India and Indonesia were represented by their respective Defence Ministers Shri Rajnath Singh and Prabbowo Subianto.

Highlights

The leaders held discussions on strengthening the ties between the two maritime neighbours. The countries will inject a new momentum to their strategic partnership. The talks included export of BrahMos missile to Indonesia by India.

India-Indonesia

With the India-China stand off at Line of Actual Control, there are possibilities for similar encounters in the maritime. Predicting this, India has been working hard to strengthen its maritime cooperation.

Malabar Exercise

India is trying to make the Malabar Exercise as Quad Exercise. The Malabar Exercise is a naval exercise conducted between India, Japan and the USA. This year, India has invited Australia and the later has agreed to attend.

Malabar Exercise is being conducted since 1992 as bilateral exercise between India and United States. Japan became a permanent partner of the exercise in 2015.

Quad is a Quadrilateral Security Dialogue held between India, US, Japan and Australia.

Samudra Shakti

Similarly, India is trying to build strong ties with Indonesia, especially in maritime. The bilateral maritime exercise conducted between India and Indonesia is ‘’Samudra Shakti”.

Four P-8I aircrafts to arrive India in 2021

The Defence Acquisition Council cleared the purchase of six P-8I aircrafts in 2019. Of this, four are to arrive in 2021. There are talks to acquire six more.

Highlights

The P-8I aircrafts are mainly used for maritime surveillance purposes. India’s long-range reconnaissance, anti-submarine, electronic jamming and surveillance capabilities in the Indian Ocean Region will get a boost with the arrival of P-8I.

About P-8I

The P-8I is integrated with Harpon Block II air launched missiles and lightweight torpedoes. It is capable of carrying 129 sonobuoys that locate submarines and can also launch anti-ship missiles killing the submarine.

Background

The United States have already acquired a string of ports in Myanmar, Sri Lanka, Pakistan, Iran and east Africa to contain Indian Nay and also challenge the presence of US Central command forces, British and French Navy.

China’s String of Ports

China has 70% stake at Kyaukpyu port in Myanmar, Hambantota port in Sri Lanka, Gwadar port in Pakistan and Jask port in Iran.

India’s plans

India is being cautious that China can replicate its aggressive posture along Line of Actual Control in Indian Ocean Region as well. India is also formalizing QUAD grouping. US, Japan, Australia are the other three members of QUAD grouping.

COMCASA

The purchase of P-8I has been possible because of Communications, Compatibility and Security Agreement India signed with the US. The pact provided a legal framework to exchange encrypted communication.