The United States military on Wednesday renamed its Pacific Command the US Indo-Pacific Command, Reuters reported. The command, responsible for the country’s military activity in the greater Pacific region, has about 3,75,000 civilian and military personnel.

“Relationships with our Pacific and Indian Ocean allies and partners have proven critical to maintaining regional stability,” US Defense Secretary Jim Mattis said on Wednesday. “In recognition of the increasing connectivity between the Indian and Pacific Oceans, today we rename the US Pacific Command to US Indo-Pacific Command.”

Mattis was reading prepared statements during a change of command ceremony. Admiral Harry Harris, who headed the command, has been chosen by US President Donald Trump to be ambassador to South Korea. Admiral Philip Davidson took his place on Wednesday.

Davidson had in April described the Indo-US relationship as a “historic opportunity”.

The US is now India’s second-largest weapons supplier, behind Russia. However, on Monday, the US expressed reservations about a proposed arms deal between India and Russia for five S-400 surface-to-air missile systems. US Arms Service Committee Chairperson Mac Thornberry said the deal could “complicate our [India’s and America’s] ability to work towards interoperability together”.