Network paper 2: | IR The bilateral, regional and global groups in which India participates and harms India`s interests are a small island located southwest of the main and largest island in Seychelles. It is located near the Mozambique Canal, from which many sea routes pass in the Indian Ocean. Its location gives it strategic importance for monitoring navigation in the Mozambique Canal. Assumption Island is located 27 km south of Anse Takamaka, on Aldabra Atoll, and is part of the Aldabra group. It is a coral island 11.6 km2 in the area. The west bank has an almost uninterrupted sandy beach of 5.5 km. Two large sand dunes are prominently established on the southeast coast of the island, one of which is 32 metres high.  The 5.5 km white sand beach, which stretches on the southeast side of the island, has repeatedly been described as the “best beach in the world” because of its white sand, crystal clear waters, diversity of sea creatures and lack of crowds. Due to the destructive effect of guano mining, which lasted until 1983, the island is dominated by vast bare rocks and caves and is poorly covered with low-growth vegetation. India has been interested in the development of assumption island as a naval base, as the strategic position in the western indian ocean periphery is an important strategic position and its presence in the region where China is trying to strengthen its military presence. To do so, India signed a 20-year agreement during Prime Minister Narendra Modi`s visit to Seychelles in 2015.
It was designed for India`s first naval base project abroad and gained momentence after China acquired its first African naval base in Djibouti (near the Horn of Africa) in November 2014. However, after opposition leaders in Seychelles openly opposed a deal with India, the Seychelles president refused to enter the Seychelles National Assembly (their parliament) because he did not have a majority. Subsequently, in January 2018, India and Seychelles finalized an updated version of the original pact to address many of Seychelles` concerns. In 2015, Seychelles and India signed an agreement on the construction and operation of a joint military facility on the island.     A radar coastal surveillance system built with India`s assistance was commissioned in 2016.  A revised agreement was signed in 2018 and the Seychelles President approved its ratification.  The Indian government also stated that this was a joint project at the request of the Seychelles government, jointly managed by the two countries.  India plans to invest $550 million in the construction of the facility.  Recently, the agreement for an Indian military base in Seychelles was declared “dead” by the island`s opposition party. The Opposition Leader also made it clear that this was the end of the “assumption agreement” and that there were no further discussions on the agenda at India`s military base.  Seychelles President Danny Faure said before his state visit to India that the Inde-Seychelles project for the development of a naval base in the Virgin Mary Islands would not progress in his country.