The focus of Army Chief Gen MM Naravane's visit was to further strengthen defence and strategic cooperation

In the course of his three-day visit to South Korea, Army Chief General MM Naravane held extensive talks with the East Asian country’s military Chief Gen Nam Yeong Shin on ways to boost bilateral military ties, and visited several key installations, including the heavily fortified Demilitarized Zone (DMZ).

"General MM Naravane #COAS visited 30th Armoured Brigade & #DMZ #RepublicofKorea. During the three-day visit to #RepublicofKorea, #COAS met senior military & civilian leadership of the #RepublicofKorea & discussed avenues for enhancing India – Republic of Korea defense relations,” the Indian army said in a tweet.

The Chief of Army Staff also visited the headquarters of the South Korean Army at Gyeryong city where he was given a guard of honor.

Gen Naravane arrived in Seoul on Monday and held separate talks with Minister of National Defence Suh Wook, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen Won In Choul, and Minister of Defence Acquisition Planning Administration Gang Eun Ho. He visited the South Korean Army headquarters on Tuesday and the DMZ on Wednesday.

"General MM Naravane #COAS received a Guard of Honour at ROK Army Headquarters #Gyeryong #RepublicofKorea. #COAS also called on General Nam Yeong shin, Chief of Staff of the Republic of Korea Army, and discussed issues of bilateral defense cooperation," the Army tweeted.

It said the Chief of Army Staff also visited the 30th Armoured Brigade of the South Korean armed forces as well as the DMZ.

According to a news agency, the focus of Gen Naravane's talks with the South Korean military brass was to further strengthen strategic and defense cooperation between the two countries. It is the first-ever visit by the head of the Indian Army to South Korea.

The defense and security ties between India and South Korea have been on an upswing in the last decade as there has been a growing convergence of interests between the two sides in an array of areas including in the maritime domain.

The East Asian country has been a major supplier of military platforms and weapons to India. Indian policy-makers think there is a huge opportunity to expand cooperation in manufacturing equipment relating to aeronautics, shipbuilding, electronics, and missile technologies.

Ties between both sides are strengthened by regular bilateral visits by senior leaders. The level of strategic partnership was raised during a visit to India by then-South Korean President Lee Myung-bak in 2010. It was further elevated to the level of 'special strategic partnership' during the visit of Prime Minister Narendra Modi to Seoul in 2015.

Both sides are signatories to a mutual logistics support agreement for naval cooperation. The pact facilitates the two navies to use each other's bases for repair and replenishment of supplies.