KARACHI: Sindh Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah said on Sunday that the hosting of Aman-2019 multinational naval exercise by the Pakistan Navy was a clear manifestation of the country’s commitment towards peace and stability.

Under its motto, ‘Together for Peace’, the exercise had brought the navies of the East and the West on a common platform for the good of global commons, he said while addressing the heads of delegations of over 40 countries taking part in Aman-2019 at a meeting at Chief Minister House.

“The lines of communications of Arabian Sea need to be protected for benefit of the world,” Mr Shah said. “Threats like terrorism, drug smuggling, human trafficking and disasters require international collaboration to secure Arabian Sea/Indian Ocean region.”

Murad says Pakistan has a vital role to play in region

He said that Pakistan defined the northern shores of Arabian Sea and was located at the crossroads between Arabian, Persian, Central Asian (Turkish), Chinese and Indian civilisations. Thus, Pakistan had a vital role to play in the region, he added.

Talking about the Aman Exercise, the chief minister said that Pakistan Navy had been hosting the multi-national naval exercise, which had a global outlook, biennially since 2007. He said with the Aman Exercise, Pakistan Navy desired to seek enhanced interoperability between regional and extra-regional navies as a means of promoting peace and stability in the Indian Ocean region and beyond. “This exercise also provides a unique training opportunity to develop and practice response tactics which helps the participants foster and sustain the mutual relationships that are conducive to ensure the safe and secured sea lanes on the world’s oceans,” he said.

Mr Shah said that drills in peace time prepared the forces for any real conflict situation. “The exercise aims at boosting joint operational capabilities of the participating countries’ naval forces for peace and stability in the region.

The meeting was also attended, among others, by the head of the Pakistan Navy delegation, Commodore Zafar Iqbal, Sindh Chief Secretary Mumtaz Ali Shah and Additional Inspector General of Karachi Dr Ameer Shaikh.

Published in Dawn, February 11th, 2019