IONS MARITIME EXERCISE 2022 (IMEX 22)
31st Mar, 2022
The maiden edition of Indian Ocean Naval Symposium (IONS) Maritime Exercise 2022 (IMEX-22) was conducted at Goa recently.
About IONS MARITIME EXERCISE 2022 (IMEX 22):
- The aim of the exercise was to enhance interoperability in Humanitarian Assistance and Disaster Relief (HADR) operations among member navies.
- The exercise witnessed participation of 15 out of the 25 member nations of IONS.
- The participation included warships, Maritime Reconnaissance aircraft and helicopters from the Navies of Bangladesh, France, India and Iran.
- The exercise is seen as a significant stepping stone for regional navies to collaborate and respond collectively to natural disasters in the region and paves way for further strengthening regional cooperation.
About Indian Ocean Naval Symposium (IONS):
- The Indian Ocean Naval Symposium (IONS), established in 2007, is a premier forum for cooperation and collaboration among navies of littoral states of the Indian Ocean Region.
- The forum has enabled discussions on regional maritime issues, promoted friendly relationships, and significantly improved maritime security cooperation in the Indian Ocean Region.
- It endeavours to generate a flow of information between naval professionals that would lead to common understanding and possibly cooperative solutions on the way ahead.
- The IONS acts as a security construct for the Indian Ocean region and apart from its series of symposiums, it conducts numerous other activities like workshops, essay competitions and lectures to promote its objective.
- The chairmanship of IONShas been held by India (2008-10), UAE (2010-12), South Africa (2012-14), Australia (2014-16), Bangladesh (2016-18) and Islamic Republic of Iran (2018-21).
- France assumed the Chairmanship in June 2021 for two-year tenure.
- IONS include 24 member nations that touch or lie within the IOR, and 8 observer nations.
- The members have been geographically grouped into the following four sub-regions:
- South Asian Littorals: Bangladesh, India, Maldives, Pakistan, Seychelles, Sri Lanka and United Kingdom (British Indian Ocean Territory)
- West Asian Littorals: Iran, Oman, Saudi Arabia and United Arab Emirates
- East African Littorals: France (Reunion), Kenya, Mauritius, Mozambique, South Africa, and Tanzania.
- South East Asian and Australian Littorals: Australia, Indonesia, Malaysia, Myanmar, Singapore, Thailand and Timor-Leste.