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Navies of India, Malaysia resolve to work jointly in Indian Ocean region

NEW DELHI (PTI): Navy chief Admiral R Hari Kumar and his visiting Malaysian counterpart Admiral Tan Sri Mohd Reza Bin Mohd Sany on Wednesday vowed to uphold the principle of collective responsibility for maritime security in the Indian Ocean Region.

In their wide-ranging talks, Admiral Kumar and Admiral Reza also identified several new areas to further strengthen bilateral naval cooperation between the two sides, the Indian Navy said without elaborating.

The resolve by the two navies to uphold the principle of collective responsibility in the Indian Ocean comes amid increasing concerns over China's increasing forays into the region.

The Malaysian commander is on a four-day visit to India.

The Navy said Admiral Kumar apprised the Malaysian Navy chief of a broad range of foreign cooperation activities pursued by the Indian Navy.

"The leaders identified several new avenues for further strengthening bilateral naval cooperation and also expressed commitment to their support to uphold the principle of collective responsibility for maritime security in the Indian Ocean region," the Navy said in a statement.

Admiral Reza would also be interacting with high ranking officials from the Ministry of External Affairs and the National Security Council Secretariat (NSCS).

Admiral Reza is an alumnus of the Indian Navy's Dronacharya Gunnery Training Establishment at Kochi, from where he graduated as a Gunnery Specialist back in 1990.

He is also scheduled to visit his alma mater.

Bilateral cooperation between the Indian Navy and Royal Malaysian Navy spans across a wide canvas ranging from training to operations.

Both navies carried out the bilateral exercise Samudra Laksamana in May.

"The official visit of the Chief of Royal Malaysian Navy signifies yet another expression of growing collaboration between the two navies and commitment to sustaining the positive trajectory of bilateral relations," the Indian Navy statement said.

The visiting commander was accorded a ceremonial guard of honour at the South Block lawns prior to the commencement of the talks.

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