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Australia To Join India, US, Japan In Large Naval Exercises
By Staff, Agencies
Australia will join India, the United States and Japan in next month's Malabar naval exercises in the Indian Ocean, in a move that is expected to strengthen the military relationship between the four sides amid increased tensions with China.
Conducted annually since 1992, the maneuvers have grown in size and complexity in recent years to address what the US Navy has previously described as a "variety of shared threats to maritime security in the Indo-Asia Pacific."
The participation of Australia means that all four members of the so-called Quad will be participating in the exercises for the first time since 2007.
The Quad, or Quadrilateral Security Dialogue, is an informal strategic forum for the US, Japan, Australia and India, featuring semi-regular summits and information exchanges between the four nations.
While not a formal military alliance like NATO, it is seen by some as a potential counterweight to growing Chinese influence and alleged aggression in Asia-Pacific. The collation has been denounced by Beijing as an anti-China bloc.
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