23 nations including Australia, Malaysia, and Vietnam are going to participate in a naval exercise. The naval exercise which will be a move to agitate China will be hosted by New Delhi.
Beijing has released a warning to India that the large war-game to be staged in the waters of Indian Ocean. It could the risk spreading the Sino-Indian tensions from land to the sea. Global Times, the Beijing-based media house has called for the Chinese military to stage a tit for tat response. It can be a drill of similar size.
Milan is the eight-day exercise also called The biennial. It is being organized on the Andaman and Nicobar islands in the Eastern Indian Ocean from March 6. The islands of Andaman and Nicobar are at the juncture of Bay of Bengal and West of Chennai, Andaman Sea. Since 1995, Milan naval exercise has been held nine times.
“For the drill in the backdrop of China’s growing military posturing in the Indo-Pacific region,” India will host navies from 16 countries. This has been informed by semi-official Press Trust of India.
Beijing’s warning could be the reason for the Navy chiefs’ and representatives’ participation of the participating countries and their discussion on China’s military manoeuvres in the South China Sea.
Australia, Malaysia, Maldives, Mauritius, Myanmar, New Zealand, Oman, Vietnam, Thailand, Tanzania, Sri Lanka, Singapore, Bangladesh, Indonesia, Kenya and Cambodia are the nations of participation revealed by Captain DK Sharma.
According to the analysts, this exercise is a rare event in which so many navies from the Asia-Pacific and far-flung regions are taking part for the first time.
It comes amid speculation that this huge water can turn the South China Sea into the next hotspot when an outspoken Beijing tries to project its prospects ahead of its boundaries.
Navies of South Africa, Philippines, Mozambique, Papua New Guinea, Brunei, Seychelles and Timor Leste are also the participating navies that will take part in patrol exercises, maritime rescue and other humanitarian missions.
After the Dokalam stand-off when China and India pulled it’s troops back to escalate into a regional war, India launched an intercontinental ballistic missile in January. This ballistic missile can strike the northernmost parts of China in range of 5,000 kilometres. Also, Prithvi-II was tested in the Eastern state of Odisha.
According to a research fellow at Institute of International Relations at the Shanghai Academy of Social Sciences, Hu Zhiyong, “India is provoking China.” He added, “China should respond militarily to send the message that it’s prepared to go to the message stakes when it comes to safeguarding its own legitimate interests.”
The Navy of PLA traditionally holds exercises in the East China Sea and the Yellow Sea but “expect more sights of Chinese warships in other parts of the globe.” This remark of Zhiyong echoed a recent PLA Daily editorial that the force should go for drills and increase its presence in 2018.