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India needs to use sea for connecting with other nations: MEA Secretary

Sinha made the comments while delivering the keynote address at the "International Conference on Security in the Indian Ocean Region" organised by Vivekanand International Foundation.

By: PTI | New Delhi |
February 7, 2017 4:06:32 pm
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India needs to use sea more for connecting with neighbouring countries but this networking should happen within a “framework, legal certainty and understanding” about how nations should behave, MEA Secretary Amar Sinha said here today.

“Space-based surveillance is one of the key areas that India needs to focus on in the future because the area that we have to cover is huge primarily because of the land mass that we have.

“If we invert India’s map we will find that India’s security has necessarily focused on the north, we have always looked at the country as land bound,” said the Secretary (Economic Relations), Ministry of External Affairs.

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Sinha made the comments while delivering the keynote address at the “International Conference on Security in the Indian Ocean Region” organised by Vivekanand International Foundation.

“We need to change the mindset, sea is not something which restricts us but what connects us to the rest of the world but for all this to happen there has to be a framework, an understanding and legal certainty about how should nations behave.

“If you see India’s map upside down, we have never used the Indian Ocean, the 7000 coastal lines, as a means of reaching out and connecting with other countries. We have actually thought that sea defines the boundary of India,” he said.

Sinha asserted that while India supports freedom of navigation, overflight and unimpeded commerce based on the international law the country also believes that state should resolve disputes through peaceful means without threat or force and exercise self restraint in dealing with matters that may escalate disputes or disrupt peace and stability.

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