Millennium Post

Pak developing maritime doctrine to tackle instability in Indian Ocean Region

Pakistan is working to formulate a new maritime doctrine to tackle new emerging threats in the Indian Ocean Region (IOR) and protect its shipping and commercial interests, according to a media report on Tuesday. The draft doctrine is being reviewed at different levels in the navy and government ahead of its adoption, The Dawn said.

Retired Commander Muhammad Azam Khan, the author of the doctrine, said the doctrine is aimed at developing coherence and uniformity of thought and action within Pakistan Navy and promoting cooperation with Army, Air Force, allied navies and coalition partners.

Speaking at the Centre for International Strategic Studies (CISS) think tank yesterday, Khan, who is also a Senior Research Fellow of Pakistan Navy War College, said the doctrine would further give contextual clarity to all stakeholders and observers of maritime developments in Pakistan.

“With the regional environment of IOR (Indian Ocean Region) being marred by uncertainty and political instability, Pakistan has to maintain its maritime security, be cognizant of its security interests and put forth its doctrinal assumptions based on concepts governing application of maritime forces, the command and control structures and a carefully crafted role for its naval forces,” 
he said.

Besides the security element and development of better ties with allied navies, the doctrine also envisages protection of shipping and commercial interests and addressing issues like climate change and rise of sea level.

Retired Naval Chief Admiral Asif Sandila spoke about sea-blindness in Pakistan s doctrinal thinking an inability to appreciate the central role the oceans and naval power play in securing strategic security and economic prosperity.

Sandila said the two areas that required special attention in the debate on maritime doctrine were development of an assured second-strike capability and the increasing need for delving into cooperative mechanisms as a tool for crisis management.

CISS Executive Director Amb Ali Sarwar Naqvi stated that Pakistan was located strategically with a multidimensional naval force whose force structure made it a reckonable power in the Indian 
Ocean Region.

“The evolving strategic environment in the region requires Pakistan Navy to develop a balanced mix of capabilities to rise up to the challenge,” he said. 

Pak not keen on arms race but will ensure power balance: Sharif 
Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif on Tuesday said Pakistan was not keen on joining an arms race but would take steps to maintain regional balance of power. “Pakistan does not want to join the arms race in the region, however, will continue to ensure balance in the region,” Sharif said in a message issued on ‘Defence Day’ marked every year to commemorate the 1965 war with India. “We have attained self-reliance in production of advanced weapons and our nuclear capability is the hallmark of our strong defence,” he said. Harping on the Kashmir issue, Sharif said it should be resolved according to UN resolutions. “We have a clear stance on Kashmir and believe that the solution of this issue only lies in implementation of the resolutions of the United Nations Security Council and in accordance with the aspirations of Kashmiri people,” he said.

President, in a separate message, said Pakistan’s armed forces are fully prepared to defend the 
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