A media brief of multinational naval exercise AMAN 2019 was conducted at Pakistan Navy Fleet Headquarters. Commander Pakistan Fleet Vice Admiral Amjad Khan Niazi addressed the media and explained the details of the exercise.
Beginning in 2007, Exercise AMAN has regularly been conducted every 2 years. This year’s edition is scheduled from 08-12 February, where over 45 countries are participating with ships and observers. The exercise has two major phases: harbour and sea phases. Harbour activities would include seminars, discussions and demonstrations. In tandem, three days International maritime Conference will also be held on the topic “Global geopolitics in transition; Rethinking maritime dynamics in the Indian Ocean region”.
Pakistan has had a turbulent phase of its contemporary history, but it remained steadfast in fighting the forces of terror and tyranny. Despite countless sacrifices and losses, Pakistan continues to be responsible state cognizant of its role and significance in the international system. Like any maritime nation, Pakistan has substantial stakes in the maritime domain. Our interest in safer and crime-free seas is rooted into three conspicuous realities: 1) Our extraordinary dependence on the seas for trade, 2) Operationalization of CPEC project; and 3) Our strategic location astride the global energy highway. Cumulatively, these realities make the maritime stability as the top agenda of our national security. Pakistan considers that maritime security isn’t just important for itself but for all other countries whose prosperity and progress are strongly bonded with the seas. We truly believe in the centuries old dictum that ‘Sea unites while land divides’.
While we talk of operating together, let us be mindful of the threats and challenges that we face at seas; these range from piracy to terrorism to climate change. Vastness of the seas presents, what I call, a ‘complex duality’, i.e., seas provide the means to keep the world’s economy in motion whilst affording plenty of opportunities to the forces against progress and stability. The postulate that violent non-state actors’ threats in the maritime domain cannot be negotiated by a single country alone gets reinforced by complex duality phenomenon. This needs a collective effort to make sure the seas remain safe and secure for all of our use. Exercise AMAN is a manifestation of that acknowledged reality of combating maritime threats collectively, which Geoffrey Till concedes as “Maritime security being quintessentially cooperative rather than competitive”.
Commander Pakistan Fleet said that, the principle purpose of this exercise is to provide a forum for understanding of each other’s maritime concepts, operational cultures and identifying ways & means to combat common threats at sea. This occasion would help foster friendships amongst participating countries, which will lead to develop and practice common tactics, procedures and mechanics to deal with the maritime threats that affect us all today. Overall, Exercise AMAN is about bridging gaps and making it possible to operate together in pursuance of shared objectives.
Admiral Niazi emphasized that appropriate media coverage would help project the true purpose of the Exercise AMAN and real image of this effort of Pakistan Navy. At the heart of this entire endeavour is to work out possibilities for keeping the seas safe so that all positive maritime activities may go on without fear, threat or danger. Exercise AMAN signifies creation and sustenance of environment where navies from various countries can operate together under one theme:
“Together for Peace”
I thank you all for being here today and would be glad to answer your questions.