Washington, May 31: The US military has renamed its Pacific Command to the US Indo-Pacific Command in a largely symbolic move signalling India’s growing importance to the Pentagon. The Pacific Command has 375,000 civilian and military personnel monitoring the greater Pacific region, including India. The name change comes amid tensions with China, which has been expanding its military activity in the region. “In recognition of the increasing connectivity of the Indian and Pacific Oceans today we rename the US Pacific Command to the US Indo-Pacific Command,” Defence Secretary James Mattis said at a change-of-command ceremony in Hawaii on Wednesday.
Admiral Phil Davidson took over the leadership of the US Pacific Command from outgoing commander Admiral Harry Harris at the ceremony. Harris was earlier nominated by President Donald Trump as the next US Ambassador to South Korea. The change does not mean more personnel will be sent to the region, but instead recognises the increasing military importance of India as the the US works to assert regional dominance over China. (IANS)