India and Seychelles have agreed to expand maritime security cooperation in order to tackle the spread of piracy in the Indian Ocean region (IOR). India has also agreed to the Seychelles request for surveillance operations at its exclusive economic zones (EEZs) and to help the country train its forces.
The decisions were taken at meetings visiting defence minister AK Antony had with Seychelles leaders, including President James Alix Michel, vice president Danny Faure and various ministers of the government.
The problem of piracy in the Gulf of Aden affects all countries of the world, Antony said, adding that he shared the concerns of Seychelles on the increasing reach of the pirates.
"This is a problem which calls for cooperation among all countries. The Indian Ocean links us all and is critical for our economic interests. We must cooperate to ensure peace and stability in this region," he said.
Antony assured Seychelles India's continued cooperation in all fields, particularly in the field of defence and security
During Seychelles President Michel's visit to India, earlier in the year, prime minister Manmohan Singh had announced a $5 million assistance for defence related projects in Seychelles.