India has strongly objected to the US move. This extraordinary incident comes at a time when the two countries are trying to enhance bilateral military ties.
The United States had earlier said in a statement that its 7th Fleet, the USS John Paul Jones, on Wednesday conducted a naval exercise in its special economic zone, Freedom of Navigation, without India’s approval, under international law. ‘Was Diplomatic activities between New Delhi and Washington have also intensified to handle the situation.
India has strongly objected to the unauthorized entry of the US Navy into its Special Economic Zone, about 130 nautical miles off Lakshadweep Island.
“According to the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea, India has a clear position that no military exercise can take place in a special economic zone without permission,” Indian Foreign Ministry spokesman Arindam Bagchi told reporters on Friday. ۔ “We have informed the US government of our concerns at the diplomatic level and the USS John Paul Jones is under constant surveillance,” he said.
Erindam Bagchi added that such a campaign contradicted India’s maritime security policy and that the US Navy should have sought prior permission. The Indian official also said, “Weapons or explosives cannot be used in its territory without India’s permission under the UN Convention.”
Earlier, the US Navy said in a statement, “On April 7, 2021, USS John Paul Jones exercised his right of navigation in the Special Economic Zone on the Indian island of Lakshadweep. This is valid under international law. It is not in accordance with international law to seek permission from India.”
The US Navy statement added: “We conduct regular navigation operations, as we have done in the past and will continue to do so in the future. It’s not for any one country.”
Former Indian Navy Chief Admiral Arun Prakash said in a tweet, “Operation Freedom of Navigation by the United States in the South China Sea was seen as a response to China, but the Seventh Fleet of the US Navy What’s the message? “
The Chinese navy conducted a similar exercise near Andaman Nicobar in 2019. The then Chief of Naval Staff had said that if you do any such thing, you need to tell us about it and get prior permission.
The Indian Foreign Ministry, meanwhile, said the US ship was under constant surveillance, after which it sailed from the Persian Gulf to the Strait of Malacca.