Quad Current Affairs - 2020

Sahyog-Kaijin-India-Japan joint exercise for Coast Guards

On January 16, 2020, India and Japan took part in a joint exercise called “Sahyog-Kaijin”. The exercise was held between the coastal guards of the countries at Chennai Port.

Highlights

The Japanese ship Ehigo and 4 ships of Indian Coast Guard participated in the exercise. The coast guards conducted the scenario of capture of a hijacked ship and rescue of crew in a joint operation. They also demonstrated search and rescue operations and displayed their fire-fighting skills.

The exercise was conducted based on the agreement signed by the Coast Guards of the countries in 2006.

Significance

The exercise is important for the countries to handle piracy in the Indian Ocean region. Also, both the countries being part of the Quad grouping, it is important for them to refresh their skills, learning from each other and stay connected to ease operations at sea.

Other exercises

Apart from Coastal Guard Exercises, Indian and Japan hold other military exercises as well. The “Shinyuu Maitri”is the joint Air Force Exercise that was held in October 2019 for the first time.

The India-Japan Maritime Exercise called JIMEX was conducted in 2013 for the first time. It focuses on maritime security cooperation.

Dharma Guardian is the military exercise that is conducted between the armies of the countries.

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Indian Naval chief on a four-day visit to Sri Lanka

The Chief of Naval Forces Admiral Karabir Singh is to visit Sri Lanka between December 19 and December 22, 2019. The visit is aimed to strengthen bilateral maritime relations between the countries

Highlights

The admiral will hold bilateral talks with the vice-admiral De Silva and other senior government officials. He will also attend the passing out parade of the 60th intake of midshipmen. The parade is to be held in Trinconmalee port. India is helping Sri Lanka build the port in Triconmalee. Japan also has its role in building the port. This potentially increases India’s outreach in the Indian Ocean. China already has its presence in the region with its 99-year leased Hambantota.

Significance

It is essential for India to keep its presence in the Indian Ocean region bold and secured. The region holds good amount of traffic. Around 9.84 billion tons of goods pass through the region annually. This includes one-third of world’s bulk cargo traffic and two-third of oil shipment. Therefore, it is essential for India to secure the region countering piracy and terrorism. India along with Japan, Australia and US has signed the Quad (Quadrilateral Security Dialogue) in 2007 to counter Chinese presence in the waters of Indian Ocean.

Quad was also revived recently at the India-US 2+2 dialogue held in Washington on December 18,2019.

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