Thailand begins 3-day patrolling in Andaman to keep the Indian Ocean safe and secure for global trade
Focusing on maritime security, the Navy from India and Thailand have kicked off a three-day coordinated patrol in the Andaman Sea. It has gained more significance than before as concerns over China’s maritime presence in the Indian Ocean region has increased by multi-folds.
The Indian Navy’s offshore patrol vessel INS Saryu and Thai ship Krabi along with Dornier maritime patrol aircraft from both navies are participating in the 31st edition of the India-Thailand coordinated patrol (CORPAT), officials said.
This initiative started in 2005 and since then bi-annually both the navies undertake CORPAT along with their international maritime boundary line with an aim to keep the vital part of the Indian Ocean safe and secure for global trade.
Indian Navy Spokesperson Commander Vivek Madhwal mentioned that “the CORPAT builds up understanding and interoperability between navies and facilitates institution of measures to prevent and suppress unlawful activities like illegal unreported unregulated (IUU) fishing, drug trafficking, maritime terrorism, armed robbery and piracy.
He further explained this monitoring enhances the operational synergy by exchange of information for the prevention of smuggling, illegal immigration and for the conduct of search and rescue operations at sea.
Although the pandemic has postponed several activities in the region, the Indian Navy didn’t stop and rather participated in maritime exercises in the last few months with several countries. Last year in November, India invited Australia for the exercise and made it a drill by all the Quad member nations.
The drill comprised India, the US, Australia and Japan. It aimed at ensuring free and open access in the Indo-Pacific region. The main concern that is bothering most of the nations is increased Chinese military assertiveness in recent. Strengthening bonds and international relations with Royal Thai Navy, India hopes to expand its strong presence in the Indian Ocean region.