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UK plans to create persistent military presence in Indo-Pacific region

London [UK], October 20 (ANI): The UK has planned to maintain a 'persistent' security presence in the Indo-pacific region, UK Chief of the Defence Staff General Nicholas Carter informed on Tuesday.

"The United Kingdom has plans to establish a 'persistent' military presence in the Indo-Pacific region," Carter told a podcast hosted by the Centre for a New American Security, Sputnik reported.

Carter also explained that the visit of the warships would be an intermittent one.

"Realistically, it's episodic, It's not going to occur every year," he added.

Carter noted the United Kingdom had a long-term association with many countries in the region going back to the days of the British Empire. He said London continued to operate an advanced jungle warfare school in Brunei on the island of Borneo, Sputnik reported.

"Our jungle warfare school in Brunei will be available to friends and partners in due course ... We've always recruited a lot of servicemen and women from these countries. We've always had 350 Gurkhas. We're going build on those long associations," the official said.

However, the revived planned increased UK presence in the Indo-Pacific would not be accompanied by any reduction in London's contribution to and participation in NATO, Carter was quoted as saying by Sputnik. In other recent developments, India and UK held their inaugural maritime dialogue and discussed cooperation in the maritime domain, Indo-Pacific, regional and multilateral cooperation.

An MEA release stated that the consultations, which were led by Foreign Ministries of both countries, involved exchanges on cooperation in the maritime domain, Indo-Pacific and regional/ multilateral cooperation.

The maritime dialogue was held in a virtual format as agreed in the India-UK Roadmap 2030 for future relations adopted at the virtual summit between the two Prime Ministers in May 2021, the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) said on Tuesday. (ANI)