situation report

India, U.S., Japan: Navies Begin Joint Drills Without Australia

1 MIN READSep 26, 2019 | 19:05 GMT

What Happened: The navies of three of the four members of the Quadrilateral Security Dialogue — the United States, Japan and India — began their annual Malabar exercises off the coast of southern Japan on Sept. 26, according to a statement from the U.S. 7th Fleet. However, the fourth member, Australia, is not joining the 10-day war games.

Why It Matters: The drills highlight naval cooperation among the members. But even if the foreign ministers of the four countries met on the sidelines of the U.N. General Assembly this week, Australia did not participate in the war games because India did not wish it to join, lest Canberra's presence unduly upset Beijing at this time.

Background: India, Japan and Australia have become key U.S. defense partners in checking China's activities in the Indo-Pacific.

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