Army chiefs from India and america have pledged to broaden their army cooperation, strengthening defence ties between two nations involved over China’s rising affect within the Indo-Pacific area.
US secretary of defence Lloyd Austin and Indian defence minister Rajnath Singh met in New Delhi and agreed to deepen defence cooperation, intelligence-sharing and logistics.
“India is an more and more necessary associate in quickly shifting worldwide dynamics,” Austin stated.
“I reaffirm our dedication to a complete forward-looking defence partnership with India as a central pillar of our method to the Indo-Pacific area.”
Austin is making the primary go to to India by a prime member of President Joe Biden’s administration.
His go to follows a gathering final week between leaders of Australia, India, Japan and the US, which collectively make up the 4 nations often called the Quad.
The Quad is seen as a counterweight to China, who critics say is flexing its army muscle within the South China Sea, East China Sea, Taiwan Strait and alongside its northern border with India.
China has known as the Quad an try and include its ambitions.
Austin’s Indian counterpart Singh stated the talks have been targeted on “increasing military-to-military engagement”.
“We’re decided to understand the total potential of complete international strategic partnership,” Singh stated.
Austin arrived in New Delhi on Friday and met Prime Minister Narendra Modi and nationwide safety adviser Ajit Doval.
In keeping with a press release from the prime minister’s workplace, Modi “outlined his imaginative and prescient for the strategic partnership between the 2 nations and emphasised the necessary position of bilateral defence cooperation in India-US ties”.
Earlier than the talks on Saturday, Austin visited the Nationwide Warfare Memorial and was accorded a ceremonial guard of honour.
The timing of Austin’s go to, which follows talks between high-ranking US and Chinese language officers in Alaska amid a bitter trade of phrases, indicators the significance Biden locations on New Delhi as a safety ally.
The US and India have steadily ramped up their army relationship in recent times and signed a string of defence offers and deepened army cooperation.
The US-India safety partnership enjoys robust bipartisan assist in Washington, and it has grown considerably for the reason that early 2000s though commerce agreements have been a sticking level.
In recent times, relations between the nations have been pushed by a convergence of pursuits to counter China.
Extra not too long ago, India drew nearer to the US following its months-long army standoff with China alongside their disputed border in japanese Ladakh, the place lethal clashes erupted final 12 months.
Tensions between the nuclear-armed Asian giants have eased after the 2 nations pulled again troops from one space of competition.