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From Allies to AUKUS: The New Trilateral Defense Partnership Shaking Up the Indo-Pacific

Australia, U.K. and the U.S. cooperation agreement

March 2023

On September 15, 2021, Australia, the United Kingdom, and the United States declared the formation of the AUKUS trilateral security partnership to handle the three nations' common security concerns in the Indo-Pacific region. The partnership entails collaboration in several fields, such as intelligence sharing, technology, and military, including the transfer of nuclear submarines from the UK and the US to Australia. Today an “AUKUS row has broken out” after Australia's opposition leader and former Defense Minister claimed the country would no longer acquire British nuclear submarines, and instead would look to acquire those made in the United States. Now the US and Australia are intensifying efforts to speed up AUSKUS’s transfer of US technology exports to avoid ensnaring the AUKUS agreement and frustrating Australia's push for nuclear-powered submarines.

As a brief introduction to the AUKUS conundrum, the international community has reacted to the partnership news in both favorable and unfavorable ways from its onset. Supporters contend that the alliance will improve the security of all three nations and is a necessary response to the region's increasing security challenges. They argue that the alliances already in place between the three nations will be strengthened by the collaboration, which will also advance regional stability.


  1. Unpacking AUKUS

  2. Transforming the Indo-Pacific’s Security Landscape

  3. Securing the Seas: Analyzing Maritime Security in the Indo-Pacific and Beyond

  4. Resolving the AUKUS Divide: Seeking Common Ground?

  5. Conclusion: A Complex Landscape of Challenges and Opportunities Ahead

(Read more)


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