Independent Strategic Analysis of Australia’s Global Interests

Indian Ocean SWA Articles

United States Strengthens Iran Sanctions; Charges Laid

29 June 2011 | Indian Ocean SWA Articles

Background In the latest development in US-Iran relations, authorities in New York have filed criminal charges against Islamic Republic of Iran Shipping Lines (IRISL), the largest Iranian merchant shipping company, accusing it of trafficking and procuring weapons for use in Tehran’s ballistic missile programme. On 24 June, the United States Government widened its sanctions to...

Sudan: Ethiopian Troops to Patrol Disputed Abyei Region

29 June 2011 | Indian Ocean SWA Articles

Background The Abyei region, disputed by northern and southern Sudan, is to be demilitarised and patrolled by Ethiopian troops, operating under a United Nations Security Council mandate. The agreement comes after negotiations in the Ethiopian capital, following the invasion of Abyei by northern forces on 21 May 2011. In a departure from its usual policy...

China, India: Defence Co-operation Rapprochement Offers Potential for Regional Stability

29 June 2011 | Indian Ocean SWA Articles

Background China and India have recommenced bilateral defence co-operation and exchanges, after nearly a year’s suspension since an Indian lieutenant-general was refused a visa to enter China in July 2010. The eight-member Indian delegation was headed by a major-general. It visited China from 19-23 June and engaged in discussions with Chinese officials in Beijing. Comment...

Sri Lanka’s Stability Critical to New Delhi’s Indian Ocean Ambitions

22 June 2011 | Indian Ocean SWA Articles

Background A controversial advisory panel report, published by the United Nations in late March 2011, called for a full investigation into the perceived breaches in the Laws of Armed Conflict during the endgame of Sri Lanka’s civil war. As a result, India continues to face the challenge of balancing its relations with Sri Lanka, while...

India, Pakistan Foreign Secretaries to Hold Talks

22 June 2011 | Indian Ocean SWA Articles

Background The Indian and Pakistani Foreign Secretaries, Nirupama Rao and Salman Bashir, are due to hold talks in Islamabad on 23-24 June. Confidence-building measures are among the issues to be discussed. It will be the first major interaction between the two secretaries since the bilateral talks in Thimphu, Bhutan in February. Those talks were widely...

New Zealand Takes Command of Anti-Piracy Task Force

22 June 2011 | Indian Ocean SWA Articles

Background Following a request from the United States-led Combined Maritime Forces Headquarters, Captain Jim Gilmour of the Royal New Zealand Navy will take command of the multinational anti-piracy Combined Task Force (CTF 151), for three months from 30 June 2011. Comment Operating in the Gulf of Aden, Red Sea, Somali Basin and Arabian Sea, CTF...

Saudi Arabia: A Yemeni Dilemma

22 June 2011 | Indian Ocean SWA Articles

Background Although previously supportive of Yemeni President Ali Abdullah Saleh, Saudi Arabia is unlikely to allow his return. Instead, Riyadh faces a difficult and potentially contradictory task: attempting to maintain its influence in Yemen while ensuring a stable future for the country. Comment Saudi Arabia has sought to influence events in Yemen by keeping the...

Saudi Arabia Considering US Ballistic Missile Defence Destroyers

22 June 2011 | Indian Ocean SWA Articles

Background The Saudi Arabian Government is contemplating the purchase of American littoral combat destroyers that could be fitted with ballistic missile defence capabilities. It comes on the heels of the “Arab Spring” uprisings, which, along with the growing regional influence of Iran, has made strategic security in the Middle East a priority for Saudi Arabia...

China, Indonesia Launch Joint Special Forces Training Initiative

15 June 2011 | Indian Ocean SWA Articles

Background The first-ever training exercise involving Chinese and Indonesian Special Forces units will conclude on 17 June. With a focus on counter-terrorism and hostage rescue operations, the exercise, Sharp Knife 2011, represents a further deepening of Sino-Indonesian military relations. When considered alongside the US-Indonesia CARAT naval exercises of May 2011, the Sino-Indonesian exercise confirms Jakarta’s...

Indonesian Terror Suspects Arrested

15 June 2011 | Indian Ocean SWA Articles

Background In a busy weekend, the Indonesian police anti-terror unit arrested a total of eight persons suspected of terrorist involvement. The arrests highlight the efforts being made by Jakarta to combat Islamist extremists, who have threatened to target the state itself. They came as the country prepares for the verdict against Islamist cleric and accused...

Publication Guide

  • Associate papers are primary source assessments written by FDI associates. The assessment topics range from regional bilateral relationships and opportunities and challenges in our neighbouring countries.

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