New Delhi: South Korean Defence Minister Seo Wook is on a three-day visit to India. It is said that the visit has been planned to strengthen the defence ties between India and South Korea. Important agreements are expected during the discussions between Indian Defence Minister Rajnath Singh and South Korean Defence Minister Seo Wook. It is said that these agreements include one for the lease of a minesweeper ship from South Korea. This cooperation between India and South Korea becomes essential against the background of the movements of the Chinese Navy in the region of Indian dominance.
In December last year, Chief of Army Staff General MM Naravane had visited South Korea. At this time, he had even inspected the border between North and South Korea. This visit of the Army Chief was in the limelight, and it delivered a message that the defence cooperation between India and South Korea had become more comprehensive. An agreement to provide collaboration and necessary support for the actions of the Indian Navy in the Indo-Pacific region was signed during the visit of General Naravane. Before that, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh had visited South Korea. South Korea is one of the countries having advanced military technologies. Therefore, Indian defence cooperation with this country is crucial.
Before this, South Korea has supplied the technology required to develop the Howitzer K9 Vajra. Using the technology, India got 100 K9 Vajra artillery guns manufactured from Larson and Toubro. It is expected that a similar agreement will be signed once again. At the same time, India is said to be keen on taking the minesweeper ship, helpful in locating and disarming the mines planted on the surface and at the bottom of the sea. The decision regarding this is expected during the visit of South Korean Defence Minister Seo Wook. This is an important matter because of the increasing tension with China.
China is expressing special interests in the Indian Ocean and beyond. China is trying to corner India in this same region, and China has systematically increased the movement of its Navy in these regions. This poses a major threat to Indian interests. Therefore, special efforts are being made to strengthen the Indian Navy, and India is seeking assistance from South Korea on this front. As per media, this has increased the agreement’s importance to take the minesweeper, which India keenly wants on the lease, from South Korea.