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India Complains to US over Sailing of Warship in Economic Zone

10 Apr 2021 11:41

Islam Times - India says it has complained to the US navy about the unauthorized sailing of an American warship in the country’s exclusive economic zone.

In a statement on Friday, India’s Ministry of External Affairs said that New Delhi had “conveyed our concerns regarding this passage” to the US.

It said that the guided-missile destroyer USS John Paul Jones had been “continuously monitored transiting from the Persian Gulf towards the Malacca Straits.”

On Wednesday, the US Navy publicly announced for the first time that the missile destroyer had conducted a “freedom of navigation patrol” in Indian waters in an attempt to challenge India’s “excessive maritime claims.”

The missile destroyer “asserted navigational rights and freedoms approximately 130 nautical miles west of the Lakshadweep Islands, inside India’s exclusive economic zone [EEZ], without requesting India’s prior consent, consistent with international law.”

India, however, requires prior consent for military exercises or maneuvers in its strategic waters.

New Delhi and Washington are engaged in fundamental maritime issues over the strategic Malacca Strait, which connects the Indian Ocean to the South China Sea.

India has signed separate agreements with both the US and Australia for purported military cooperation in the Indo-Pacific region. The accords are widely seen as part of broader cooperation to counter China’s growing economic and military weight in the region.

Story Code: 926391

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