New Delhi: While the French Navy is set to lead the ‘La Perouse’ Navy exercise, Rear Admiral Jacques Fayard said that the French Navy sees the Indian Navy as a global security provider of the Indo-Pacific region.
He stressed that the Indo-Pacific is now a reality and that his forces deployed in the Indian Ocean are part of the will of the French government to be part of solutions to all the tensions in this strategic region.
He added, “We are balanced, eager to make sure that the international rules are overseen and freedom of navigation is enhanced everywhere on international waters”.
Further, while speaking on India-French bilateral relations, the Rear Admiral said that France is engaged in a “bilateral strategic relationship” with India for a long time and this relationship is particularly enhanced in the naval domain as well. He said that the two countries are currently preparing for the Varuna exercise, which is a very high-level interrupt ability exercise. Fayard informed that in the next Varuna, the two countries will be operating with some frigates, submarines of the Indian Navy.
Giving details about the upcoming ‘La Perouse’ he said, “La Perouse is an international naval exercise involving five countries namely France, the US, Australia, Japan and India. The aim of such multinational exercise is to be able to operate together and to practice our interoperability for networks, the way we are operating at our seas and we are very eager to work in such international framework”.
He even lauded the other participating countries – the US, Australia and Japan – for coordinating with France in such an exercise. Fayard, who is in charge of the operational control of all French ships deployed from the Suez Canal towards the Malacca strait, also said that there is no particular threat in that region as one million French citizens are there in the Indian Ocean.
The French navy official said that France is part of the Ocean and so they observe balance in order to be sure that all the international law of seas, the freedom of navigation, the international mechanisms are well respected in these very strategic areas.