45 countries are participating in multinational maritime exercise AMAN-2019 by Pakistan Navy
KARACHI — As five-day multinational naval exercise Aman-2019 continued its demonstration off in Karachi, President Arif Alvi, while addressing an International Maritime Conference said that the purpose of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) was to ensure peaceful trade in the region, signifying that war is no solution. He said that the Indian Ocean carries immense strategic importance, and it is the responsibility of all countries to utilize it for peaceful means. The Chief of Naval Staff (CNS), Admiral Zafar Mahmood Abbasi also addressed the conference and said that its imperative to shift towards a blue economy and utilize the ocean resources effectively.
Addressing the conference, Naval Chief Admiral Zafar Mehmood Abbasi said that the East Timor and South Sudan’s quest for self-determination was granted by the United Nations, but it has constantly failed to extend the same right to the people of Kashmir. The naval chief said the countries facing turmoil includes mostly the Muslim world that poses a grave question. He said the Gwadar Naval port is entirely and managed by Pak forces, and friendly countries could also use it like Karachi port.
With the participation of 46 nations, Pakistan Navy’s ships, submarines, boats, marines, and special forces are participating in the exercise, along with the Pakistan Air Force, Pakistan Army and Pakistan Rangers.
Commander Pakistan Fleet Vice Admiral Amjad Khan Niazi was the chief guest at the opening ceremony, while foreign diplomats and defence delegates were present at the inauguration ceremony.
The exercise will be conducted in two phases. The harbour phase from Friday to Sunday will be followed by a sea phase on Feb 11 and 12. Harbour activities will include seminars, discussions, and demonstrations along with a three-day international maritime conference on ‘Global geopolitics in transition: rethinking maritime dynamics in the Indian Ocean region’.
The Naval Chief added that Pakistan has always been an ardent supporter of maritime cooperation, and being the pioneer partner of Combined Maritime Forces’ task forces CTF-150 and CTF-151, Pakistan has been the largest regional contributor to these constructs in terms of men and material. On our national front, Pakistan has commenced ‘Regional Maritime Security Patrols’ which aims at maintaining security posture in critical sea areas and choke points in the Indian Ocean. Pakistan, located at a strategic position in the Indian Ocean, needs to prepare itself for the challenges and work out viable strategy for the development of the maritime sector.
Admiral Abbasi further highlighted that the 6th AMAN Exercise is an embodiment of Pakistan’s commitment toward global peace and harmony where the naval forces from across the continent are brought on a single platform to enhance combating capabilities in the wake of traditional and non-traditional security challenges. In his welcome address, Director General National Institute of Maritime Affairs, Vice Admiral (Retd) Syed Khawar Ali Shah, presented a brief resume including the objectives of International Maritime Conference.
Addressing the ceremony, Vice Admiral Niazi said that the Aman-19 exercise seeks to enhance cooperation between countries and allows them to take benefit from mutual advantages and understand each other. He said that maritime security is pivotal for national security and protection of maritime routes is also necessary for the economy.
At a media briefing, Vice Admiral Niazi said that maritime security should be quintessentially cooperative instead of being competitive. He had said that the exercise also provided participating countries the chance to foster friendships, which could lead them to develop and practice common tactics, procedures and mechanics to deal with the maritime threats that affected them all.
“But Aman-2019 will reinforce the confidence of [other] countries in Pakistan and the Pakistan Navy. So the message goes out as relations, especially diplomatic relations, between countries are improved.”