India's it sensitive to developments beyond its immediate neighbourhood, in the Asia Pacific, West Asia, Central Asia, and in the Indian Ocean Region. Major geo-political and geo-economic developments are currently transforming the global security scenario into one of uncertainty and volatility.


Since the end of the Cold War, the global security environment has seen major changes. On one hand, the world has witnessed a spurt of globalisation and deepening economic interdependence, which has enhanced the growth of countries like India, China, Brazil and South Africa. On the other, large parts of the world continue to be affected by conflict and violence. The global balance of power has witnessed new adjustments and dynamics, generating new strategic uncertainties, reflected often in competition and contestations.


Even as the probability of a full scale conventional war is thought to have receded since the end of the Cold War, a number of drivers have catalysed new challenges in the regional and global security landscape. The intense competition for natural resources adds another layer of volatility to existing faultlines of territorial disputes between nations and poses a challenge to the norms of international law and accepted standards of international behaviour.


The transnational threats posed by activities of terrorist organizations have been exacerbated by the dynamics of intra and inter State conflicts and pose a danger to regions beyond the primary theatres. The transnational mobilization of foot-soldiers and logistics support for terrorist activities poses a serious internal security challenge for countries around the world. Technological advances in  telecommunications and the cyber domain have provided force multipliers to boost the capabilities and impact of terrorist activities. There is continuing concern over terrorist threats emanating from India's neighbourhood and the transnational and other linkages through which such groups are being sustained.


The prospect of peace and stability in various regions of the world is also marred by the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction and it continues to be major international security concerns, notwithstanding international efforts to strengthen nuclear security and to prevent non-State actors from acquiring nuclear materials. Piracy and other challenges to maritime security remain major challenges to regional and global peace and security.


The shift of the global balance of power from Europe to the Asia-Pacific region has brought a complex and dynamic interplay of economic, military and diplomatic factors, and it is reflected in escalation of maritime territorial disputes, military postures and power rivalries, all of which have added to the uncertainties in the security situation in the region. The contesting claims over island territories in the Asia Pacific have created tensions in the region and threaten to polarise the Asia Pacific community. The situation on the Korean peninsula is also fraught with tension between North and South Korea with North Korea conducting its third nuclear test. In view of these developments the global powers are getting to play a prominent role in regional affairs which is affecting the military balance and impacting economic cooperation between countries in the region. Non-traditional crime, terrorism, natural disasters, pandemics, cyber security and food and energy security, also pose serious challenges to the region.


India has important political, economic, commercial and social interests in the Asia Pacific and has a stake in continued peace and stability in the region. India supports freedom of navigation in international waters and the right of passage, in accordance with international law. India's view is that all countries must exercise restraint and resolve bilateral issue diplomatically, according to principles to international law and without recourse to the use of threat to use of force. India is of the view that in the current regional security landscape there is a need to promote a cooperative approach. Hence, we remain actively engaged with the Asia Pacific community through a web of bilateral as well as multilateral fora like the East Asia Summit, ADMM-Plus and ASEAN Regional Forum (ARF), so as to contribute to peace and stability in the region.


The Central Asian region has gained salience in recent times due to the presence of hydrocarbon and mineral resources. The increasing strategic competition in this region has implications for India's security. To further its large geo-strategic interests in the region, India has focused on developing strong political-economic and security partnerships with the Central Asian Republics.


The situation in in Ukraine has brought to the forefront a fresh challenge to peace and stability in the region and a prolonged stand-off could have an adverse impact on international security and the global economy. India believes that there is scope for a political and diplomatic solution to the current problem.


The West Asian region continues to face volatility and instability in the wake of the changes brought about by the Arab Spring. These changes have ushered in fundamental political and socio-economic transformation, in many parts of the region. As a consequence a number of non-state actors have mushroomed in the region. Sectarian fault-lines have also deepened, thereby disturbing the stability and internal cohesion of various countries in the region. India has not only vital stakes, but also has long standing relations with the countries and people of this region. Continuing unrest and uncertainty in West Asia has a major impact on India's diverse interests in the region, which include the safety and security of nearly seven million Indians who live and work in the region, as well as the uninterrupted flow of India's energy imports from the region. Therefore, India remains engaged with countries in the region on defence and security issues of common concern.


The evolving situation in Syria and Iraq is of growing concern in terms of the impact of ongoing developments on the stability of these countries and repercussions for other countries within and beyond the region. The extension of the Syrian conflict into Iraq has serious ramifications for the region, with heightened extremist and sectarian overtones. India has expressed deep concern at the violence and loss of human lives in Syria and has consistently called for an inclusive and comprehensive political solution which will take into account the legitimate aspirations of the Syrian people. India has also expressed firm support to Iraq in its fight against international terrorism and in its efforts to preserve its unity and territorial integrity.


The escalation of violence between Israel and Palestine is a matter of concern and further threatens the peace and security of the region.


Iran occupies an important place in the economic and security calculus of India. India has welcomed the interim nuclear agreement between E-3+3 and Iran and supports resolving all issues related to Iran's nuclear programme through a comprehensive dialogue between the parties.


Many regions in Africa are witnessing upheaval, as uprising and insurgencies have been sweeping across a number of North and West African countries. Of particular concern is the growing influence of terrorist organizations in the region. While, the threat from piracy in the Western Indian Ocean has diminished, the same has assumed serious proportions in the Gulf of Guinea. A number of Indian seafarers have been affected in acts of piracy in the Gulf of Guinea. The activities of terrorist outfits in Nigeria and other countries is a threat to the internal stability of these countries and the linkages between these and other terrorist organisations outside the region is a matter of serious concern. India has historic ties with several African nations and seeks to deepen its bonds with them through the strategic initiatives of the India Africa Forum Summit (IAFS) that seeks to promote bilateral, regional and continent-level political, economic development and strategic cooperation with African countries.


The Indian Ocean Region (IOR) is vital to India's security and prosperity. As a maritime nation by historical traditions and by its geo-physical configuration and geo-political circumstances, India is dependent on the oceans surrounding it. India's peninsular dimension in the Indian Ocean Region, places it adjacent to the most vital sea-lanes of the world, stretching from the Suez Canal and the Persian Gulf to the Malacca Straits. India's security and prosperity is dependent on these sea lanes and its ability to engage freely in maritime trade and commerce.


The IOR is emerging as a source of multiple security concerns arising out of piracy, terrorism, human trafficking, WMD proliferation and competition over maritime resources. This has resulted in growing presence of extra-regional powers in the Indian Ocean, increasing the prospect of geo-strategic competition between them. As maritime security issues gain greater urgency and relevance, power rivalries in the IOR will need to be closely monitored, as India's strategic stakes in this region are of critical significance to its security calculus.


India remains actively engaged in various regional fora that are based in or border the IOR region, so as to build a network of cooperative structures which would bring together all stakeholders based on mutuality of interests. The initiative to establish an expanded maritime security cooperation framework between India and various island countries in the Indian Ocean, namely, Sri Lanka, Maldives, Mauritius and Seychelles has been born out of a mutual acknowledgement of the commonality of the sea-borne security challenges and the need for cooperative approaches.