UNCLOS violation damages trust; Choke points in IOR crucial: Dy NSA Misri

Indian Deputy NSA sent out an indirect message about the Chinese activity in the South China Sea at Shangri La dialogue

Photo: Wikipedia

Photo: Wikipedia

BS Web Team New Delhi

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India in its address at the Shangri La Dialogue in Singapore, reiterated its stance on the Chinses activity in the South China Sea region, the Economic Times (ET) reported.

Representing India at the international forum, Deputy NSA Vikram Misri sent out an indirect message over the Chinese activity in the South China Sea region, saying that respect for “foundational principles and regimes” like UN Convention on the Law of the Seas (UNCLOS) “is essential for the credibility of the global order.” And violations can damage the trust member-nations have in these organisations.

Highlighting the importance of cooperation, Misri stressed the need to adhere to law, observe norms and respect rules, including the UNCLOS, and refrain from unilateral measures to change the status quo.

Misry added that respect for such foundational principles and regimes is essential to maintain the credibility of the global order. He explained that when nations disregard their legal obligations or violate long-standing agreements, the damage to trust and confidence is immense.

The Chinese defence minister was also present at the dialogue.

Misri further highlighted India’s initiatives to keep Indian Ocean Region (IOR) safe and referred to Singapore’s important role along the Sea Lanes of Communication as a provider for logistics and staging posts to navies.

The Deputy NSA also pointed to how Indo-Pacific has been at the centre of contemporary geo-economic and geo-strategic discourse in recent times.

Speaking specifically about the Pacific portion he said that the region has witnessed a transformation in dynamics across fields of security, global commons and international law preservation.  

Reiterating the importance of one of the busiest waterways of the world, Misri said that as Singapor sits in some sense at the fulcrum of the Indian and Pacific Oceans, it makes for an "apposite" venue to dwell on a Indian Ocean Region that makes for a key constituent of the Indo-Pacific.

He further drew attention to the fact that Indian Ocean is perhaps the only one where entry is through "choke points".  These choke points in future can be controlled in certain situations and may become a cause of friction in furture.

"The Ocean is also perhaps the only one where entry is through choke points, which can be controlled in certain situations and become friction points. Island territories in the Ocean also work to shape the security architecture and play a vital role along the Sea Lanes of Communication by providing logistics and staging posts to navies,” The ET report quoted Misri.

Misri in his address said that India’s approach in the region is based on the theme of Security and Growth for All in the Region (SAGAR).

 Coined by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in 2015 in Mauritius the theme SAGAR includes the aspects of security, capacity building, collective action, sustainable development, maritime engagement, and regional connectivity.

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First Published: Jun 4 2023 | 11:17 AM IST

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