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Tuesday, July 21, 2015

China defends deployment of submarines in Indian Ocean

Type 094 (Jin) class SSBNDefending the recent deployment of Chinese submarines in the Indian Ocean, a Chinese military strategist at the People's Liberation Army's official think-tank said on Monday that the Chinese navy was right "to protect its interests" in the region which India should be "broad minded" enough to accommodate.

Responding to Indian concerns about the deployment of a Yuan-class submarine which sailed through the Arabian Sea to Karachi in May - this followed the deployment of submarines to Colombo last year, which also triggered concerns - Zhou Bo, honorary fellow at the Academy of Military Science, the top PLA think-tank in Beijing, justified the deployments in an article published in the official China Daily newspaper, arguing that much of China's energy interests were in the Indian Ocean.

"Even if Chinese naval ships and submarines appear regularly in the Indian Ocean, so what?" he asked. "As the largest trading nation in the world, maritime security in the Indo-Pacific cannot be more important for China. The Chinese navy has to protect its overseas interests such as the safety of personnel and security of property and investment. Much of these are along the rim of the Indian Ocean."

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