- The maiden edition of Indian Ocean Naval Symposium (IONS) Maritime Exercise 2022 (IMEX-22) was conducted at Goa and in the Arabian Sea.
- The exercise witnessed participation of 15 out of the 25 member nations of IONS.
- The aim of the exercise was to enhance interoperability in Humanitarian Assistance and Disaster Relief (HADR) operations among member navies.
- The exercise is seen as a significant stepping stone for regional navies to collaborate and respond collectively to natural disasters in the region and paves way for further strengthening regional cooperation.
Indian Ocean Naval Symposium
- IONS is a premier forum for cooperation and collaboration among navies of littoral states of the Indian Ocean Region.
- The inaugural IONS Seminar was held in New Delhi in February, 2008.
- It is a voluntary initiative that seeks to increase maritime cooperation among navies of the littoral states of the Indian Ocean Region by providing an open and inclusive forum for discussion of regionally relevant maritime issues.
- There are 36 littoral states in the Indian Ocean which have been geographically grouped into the following four sub-regions.
- South Asian Littorals – Bangladesh, India, Maldives, Pakistan, Seychelles and Sri Lanka
- West Asian Littorals – Bahrain, Iran, Iraq, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, UAE and Yemen
- East African Littorals – Comoros, Djibouti, Egypt, Eriteria, France, Kenya, Madagascar, Mauritius, Mozambique, Somalia, South Africa, Sudan and Tanzania
- South East Asian and Australian Littorals – Australia, Indonesia, Malaysia, Myanmar, Singapore, Thailand and Timor Leste.
- The forum has enabled discussions on regional maritime issues, promoted friendly relationships, and significantly improved maritime security cooperation in the Indian Ocean Region.
- It endeavours to generate a flow of information between naval professionals that would lead to common understanding and possibly cooperative solutions on the way ahead.
SOURCE: THE HINDU,THE ECONOMIC TIMES,MINT