More maritime cooperation required- Prime Minister
The maritime domain facing many challenges requires more maritime
cooperation and interaction among Navies of the states of the Indian
Ocean region. Through that regional Naval capacities can be synergized
for speedy and effective response, said Prime Minister Ratnasiri
Wickramanayaka. The Prime Minister was addressing the inaugural ceremony
of the Indian Ocean Naval Symposium(IONS) Technical Seminar yesterday.
The Prime Minister said that the Indian Ocean occupies an important
position in the World's geopolitical and trade sphere. "This forum is an
ideal opportunity to promote a shared understanding of the maritime
issues facing the littoral nation states of the Indian Ocean and to
formulate a common set of strategies designed to enhance regional
maritime security", he added.
The Prime Minister observed that the maritime domain in the Indian
Ocean is facing many challenges and that can be worked out on a common
ground by establishing regional cooperation. "Safety, stability and
security are an invisible part of mankind's endeavor to achieve
physical, economic and even spiritual well being and prosperity", he
added. He pointed out that hosting the IONS Technical seminar is clear
evidence of the understanding and realizing the fact of this implication
among the littoral states of the Indian Ocean region.
Navy Commander Admiral Wasantha Karannagoda said the threats facing
present day law abiding states are not arising from territorial or
ideological issues of other nation states. They are instead a
bewildering variety of manifestations of malevolent non-state entities.
"To these problems must be added natural disasters and manmade
catastrophes. These are not threats or challenges that can be met by
states acting in splendid isolation, each secure in its military
capability. These are common threats that demand common approaches and
common solutions ", he added.
Admiral Karnnagoda noted that people are living in an era of rapid
change in technology on a minute to minute basis in the mobility of
ideas, opinion, people and capital. "Indeed, the Indian Ocean Naval
Symposium was conceived of and designed within these very parameters of
The IONS initiative recognizes the strength that can be derived from
cooperative engagement in our region", he stressed.
In this context the primary aim of the IONS is to promote mutually
beneficial means, methods and mechanisms of constructive engagement
which bear upon the maritime domain that evolve through a consensual,
participative and cooperative approach into agreed remedies relevant to
regional maritime security concern.
"This forum will be a springboard to foster maritime cooperation
among the littoral states", he said.
He asserted that the Indian Ocean is the third largest ocean in terms
of area but unquestionably the first in terms of its impact on human
civilization, adding that the region contains 1/3 of the world's