India and the United States have been militarily courting for the past two years, following a prolonged freeze in defense diplomacy and U.S. sanctions after India’s nuclear-weapons testing in 1998 . U.S. Defense Secretary Ash Carter has recently returned from a three-day visit to India, his second trip this year. Mr. Carter discussed logistical requirements for U.S. Naval vessels in the region, digital mapping protocols, communications procedures, and the possibility of – someday – opening the framework for a military alliance.
India is not set to join any U.S. led maritime patrols in the South China Sea, despite a premature U.S. announcement India would in February. Fearing Chinese reprisals, India issued a sharp denial of any claim that their navy would patrol the South China Sea. Their concerns are valid, as China has a rising historical trend for claiming bordering lands; leaving India disturbed by their territorial dispute with China, which resulted in a 1962 war over a portion of the Himalayas. China’s, People’s Liberation Army Navy have also begun to maneuver freely throughout the Indian Ocean.
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