We Have Vital Stakes In Ensuring Stable Indo-Pacific: Gen Pande
Indian Army Chief Gen Manoj Pande on Wednesday said that to suggest India and the US merely have “skin in the game” in the Indo-Pacific region would be an “understatement”, adding the stakes are high in ensuring stability, cooperation and a focused approach.
“To say that we have skin in the game is an understatement. I think we have vital stakes today in ensuring that the Indo-Pacific is stable, that it is secured, that there is cooperation and that the focus is on the right things,” said Army Chief general Manoj Pande while addressing the conclusion ceremony of Indo-Pacific Armies Chiefs Conference (IPACC) at Manekshaw Centre in Delhi.
The armies of India and the US hosted the 13th biannual IPACC, the 47th annual Indo-Pacific Army Management Seminar (IPAMS), and the 9th Senior Enlisted Forum in the national capital from September 25-27.
The gathering is notably the largest conference for land forces (army, marines, etc.) in the region.
“As we draw this forum to a close, I want to express my gratitude to each one of you, for participating and enriching the discussions with your insightful perspectives on the theme – ‘Together for Peace: Sustaining Peace & Stability in the Indo-Pacific’,” said General Pande.
He added that the collective viewpoints on regional and sub-regional security dynamics, challenges, concerns and aspirations, have brought to fore important aspects that impact, contribute and need to be addressed, if ‘peace’ and ‘stability’ is to be achieved and sustained, in the Indo-Pacific region.
General Pande also acknowledged and appreciated the ‘Trust Quotient’ that all fostered and helped build, during the deliberations.
“The frank exchange of thoughts and ideas has reaffirmed that India and the US are bonded by a common thread, of ‘values’ that stand for collective good, adherence to ‘international laws and conventions, respect for each other’s sovereignty and a yearning for peace. In doing so, the two countries have asserted that, despite their geographical separation, they stand united in their commitment towards ‘peace’ and ‘stability’” said General Pande.
He also listed the key takeaways from the conference – which according to him were –commitment towards collaboration, exchange of best practices, humanitarian assistance and disaster relief, concerns on climate change, and the need for a synergized response.
He also said that the need to give impetus towards enhancing bilateral relations through ‘Military Diplomacy’, is the next key takeaway.
“India and the US have also affirmed the need for ‘open and sustained dialogue’, as a cornerstone for fostering mutual understanding and cultivating relationships. It clearly emerged that it is through shared values of cooperation, collaboration, and pursuit of common goals, that the foundations for a constructive engagement are laid. That is the only way ahead, to give effect to ‘peace’ and ‘stability’,” said the Indian Army Chief.
He also extended his heartfelt gratitude to Army Chiefs and Heads of Delegations of the Indo-Pacific Nations to jointly host this event with the US Army.
General Pande also thanked Gen Randy George, Chief of Staff of the US Army and his team for making the 13th Indo-Pacific Armies Chiefs’ Conference, the 47th Indo-Pacific Armies Management Seminar (IPAMS) and the Senior Enlisted Leaders Forum (SELF) 2023, a grand success.
The objective of these meetings is to promote peace and stability in the Indo-Pacific region through mutual understanding, dialogue, and friendship.
Participation in IPAMS has grown from nine nations at the first conference held in Honolulu, Hawaii in 1977, to 31 nations in Seoul, Korea in 2017. (ANI)
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