Navy chief Admiral Sunil Lanba said today that growing vulnerabilities in the Indo-Pacific region present unique challenges, as he called on the regional navies to join hands for the safety and security of the seas. Lanba, who is here for an introductory visit from May 14 to 18, called on Defence Minister Dr Ng Eng Hen at the International Maritime Defence and Exhibition (IMDEX 2017) at Changi Exhibition Centre (CEC). In the meeting, both the sides reaffirmed their strong ties between the Singapore and Indian armed forces, the ministry said in a statement. Lanba, during a conference, said there is a "necessity to base our responses on three guiding principles: Adherence to globally accepted norms regarding global commons and respecting the established arbitration mechanisms. "Strengthening multilateral cooperative mechanisms and greater interaction between various regional groupings on issues of common interest.
Resource sharing among maritime nations for optimising our efforts to keep the maritime domain safe," he said. Expanding challenges and growing vulnerabilities in the Indo-Pacific region present unique challenges for the region's maritime forces, Lanba told delegates at the 5th International Maritime Security Conference. "It is therefore incumbent upon the navies of the region to join hands to ensure safe and secure seas which remain our common maritime objective," he said in his speech on 'Pursuing Common Maritime Security Objectives'. Lanba also called on Chief of Defence Force Lieutenant- General Perry Lim and Chief of Navy Rear-Admiral (RADM) Lai Chung Han. Speaking to PTI, he said, "we discussed our bilateral relationship, what we have been doing along with the Republic of Singapore Navy (RSN)". Lanba said the discussions also took place on cooperation in areas of interest and bilateral exercises. The Indian navy was represented by INS Sahyadri and INS Karmorta at the International Maritime Review held yesterday in conjunction with the Singapore navy to celebrate its 50 years of establishment. "Our presence this fortnight in Singapore also reflects India's commitment to contribute to advancing maritime security in the region and to working with partners to build a stable, peaceful and prosperous Asia," India's High Commissioner in Singapore Jawed Ashraf said. Lanba will visit the Singapore navy's Changi Command and Control Centre at Changi Naval Base, where he will receive a brief on the Information Fusion Centre, Maritime Security and Submarine Operational Safety. He will also visit the Multinational Operations and Exercise Centre to observe the Maritime Information-Sharing Exercise. He is also scheduled to address students from the Goh Keng Swee Command and Staff College at the SAFTI Military Institute tomorrow. On May 18, Lanba will visit the Republic of Singapore Air Force (RSAF)'s Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) Training School, where he will receive a brief on the RSAF's UAV training. His introductory visit underscores the warm and long- standing bilateral defence ties, strengthened by the revised Defence Cooperation Agreement signed in 2015 as well as the Air Force and Army Bilateral Agreements concluded in 2007 and 2008 respectively, the ministry's statement added.
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