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Nation Politics 27 Oct 2020 India, US sharpen fo ...

India, US sharpen focus on China ahead of 2+2

DECCAN CHRONICLE. | SRIDHAR KUMARASWAMI
Published Oct 27, 2020, 11:39 am IST
Updated Oct 27, 2020, 11:39 am IST
India-US 2+2 Ministerial Dialogue underway at Hyderabad House.
New Delhi : U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, second left, and Secretary of Defence Mark Esper, left, stand for photographs with Indian Foreign Minister Subrahmanyam Jaishankar, right, and Defence Minister Rajnath Singh ahead of their meeting at Hyderabad House in New Delhi, India, Tuesday, Oct. 27, 2020. In talks on Tuesday with their Indian counterparts, Pompeo and Esper are to sign an agreement expanding military satellite information sharing and highlight strategic cooperation between Washington and New Delhi with an eye toward countering China. AP/PTI
 New Delhi : U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, second left, and Secretary of Defence Mark Esper, left, stand for photographs with Indian Foreign Minister Subrahmanyam Jaishankar, right, and Defence Minister Rajnath Singh ahead of their meeting at Hyderabad House in New Delhi, India, Tuesday, Oct. 27, 2020. In talks on Tuesday with their Indian counterparts, Pompeo and Esper are to sign an agreement expanding military satellite information sharing and highlight strategic cooperation between Washington and New Delhi with an eye toward countering China. AP/PTI

Asia” at what officials said was a “warm and productive meeting” ahead of the 2+2 Dialogue between the two countries on Tuesday in New Delhi at the foreign and defence ministerial level that is expected to focus on Chinese military aggression behaviour in the region.

US secretary of state Michael R. Pompeo and US secretary of defense Mark T. Esper reached New Delhi during the day. Mr Esper held a bilateral meeting with defence minister Rajnath Singh, while external affairs minister S. Jaishankar met with Mr Pompeo where he “shared concerns on stability and security” in Asia as well as the menace of the “completely unacceptable” cross-border terrorism from Pakistan.

 

On his bilateral meeting with Mr Esper, Mr Singh tweeted, “India is delighted to host the US secretary of defence, Dr Mark Esper. Our talks today were fruitful, aimed at further deepening defence cooperation in a wide range of areas. Today’s discussions will add new vigour to India-US defence relations & mutual cooperation.”

With India facing a major security challenge from China in the Ladakh sector, the 2+2 talks are expected to focus prominently on Indo-US strategic and defence cooperation, especially between the two Navies in the Indo-Pacific region, intelligence and data sharing as well as sale of state-of-the-art American defence equipment to India.

 

The two nations will ink the Basic Exchange and Cooperation Agreement (BECA) defence pact on Tuesday. It will enable India to use the US’ geospatial intelligence and satellite imagery to improve the accuracy of missiles and drones and boost maritime Intelligence-sharing in the Indo-Pacific region.

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