India, S’pore agree on cooperation among armed forces

India, S’pore agree on cooperation among armed forces

Joint Media Briefing by Smt. Nirmala Sitharaman Minister of Defence and Dr Ng Eng Hen, Minister of Defence of the Republic of Singapore on completion of 3rd DMD. DH photo

The third Defence Ministers’ Dialogue (DMD) between India and Singapore successfully concluded in Visakhapatnam on Tuesday. It was decided to renew the bilateral agreement for the conduct of joint army training and exercises in India.

The agreement gives out an exhaustive framework for the conduct of joint training as well as exercises for the Singapore armed forces in India and will further strengthen the cooperation between the two armed forces.

Addressing a joint press conference, Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman affirmed India’s full support and active participation in the regional security architecture of the ASEAN Defence Ministers’ Meeting (ADMM)-Plus and its many initiatives.

She affirmed India’s belief that disputes should be resolved through peaceful means, and in accordance with the universally recognised principles of international law.

She and her counterpart Dr Ng Eng Hen, Minister of Defence of the Republic of Singapore, agreed on the importance of international cooperation in tackling transnational security threats and, in particular, measures to collectively tackle the threat of terrorism.

Dr Ng expressed appreciation for Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s keynote address at the 2018 Shangri-La Dialogue, where he articulated India’s vision for the Indo-Pacific region. “In this regard, Singapore strongly supports India’s deep engagement with ASEAN member states’ participation in patrols along the Straits of Malacca with Singapore and looks forward to a inaugural conduct of the trilateral maritime exercise with Thailand in the Andaman Sea,” he

Both ministers agreed to step up intelligence and information sharing, particularly in the areas of maritime security and counter-terrorism and expand collaboration in submarine safety and rescue. Ministers also commended the progress in defence technology collaboration under the auspices of the India-Singapore Defence Technology Steering Committee and the India-Singapore Defence Industry Working Group. It was also agreed to hold the fourth DMD in Singapore next year on mutually convenient dates.

The DMD commenced after both countries signed the revised Defence Cooperation Agreement (DCA) in 2015 to strengthen the long-standing defence relationship between the armed forces of Singapore and India.