India-US Dialogue: Today, Two Plus Two Dialogue has started between India and America. For this, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken and Defense Minister Lloyd Austin are present in Delhi. In this meeting, there is talk on increasing security cooperation and partnership between India and America (US). A fierce conflict continues between Israel and Hamas. But meanwhile, the meetings taking place all over the world seem to be connected to this war in some way or the other. Today in India, the US Defense Minister and the Foreign Minister are meeting their counterparts Foreign Minister S Jaishankar and Defense Minister Rajnath Singh. Let us know what will be the special issues in this meeting.
S Jaishankar said – Indo-Pacific region is the main focus of discussions
External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar said the highlight of this year was the PM’s state visit to the US in June. This has opened a new chapter in our relations. President Joe Biden’s visit to Delhi in September has played a positive role in our relations. His support was very important in the G-20 summit. Today’s conversation will be an opportunity to take forward the vision of our respective leaders. Building a visionary partnership as we build a shared global agenda.
In the two plus two talks we will take a comprehensive overview of cross-cutting strategic, defense and security relations, technology and supply chain cooperation and people-to-people exchanges. He said that our trade today is more than 200 billion US dollars, 2,70,000 Indian students study in America and we have a diaspora of 4.4 million. The main focus of our discussions today will be the Indo-Pacific region.
Lloyd Austin said- exchange of views of the two largest democracies
In the India-US 2+2 talks, US Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin said that we are meeting at a time of great momentum. In the face of urgent global challenges, it is more urgent than ever that the world’s two largest democracies exchange ideas, find common goals and work for their people. We have made gains over the past year in building our key defense partnerships, and this will help us contribute even more to peace and stability. We are integrating our industrial bases.
He said that cutting edge technology is being shared. The scope of our cooperation is vast and extends from sea to space. The strength of our partnership lies in the people-to-people ties that form the heart of our long friendship together. Our diplomats, entrepreneurs and students are expanding our partnership into new areas including clean energy, artificial intelligence and semiconductors.
What did Rajnath Singh say?
During the India-US 2+2 talks, Defense Minister Rajnath Singh said India-US bilateral relations have witnessed growing convergence of strategic interests and enhanced defence, security and intelligence cooperation. Defense remains one of the most important pillars of our bilateral relations. Your visit to India comes at a time when India and America are closer than ever. Despite various emerging geopolitical challenges, we need to remain focused on important and long-term issues. Our partnership is vital to ensuring a free, open and rules-bound Indo-Pacific region. We look forward to working together with the United States to build capabilities and partnerships that can address challenges.
Defense and security cooperation in focus
According to media reports, the annual 2+2 ministerial talks between Blinken, Austin, Jaishankar and Singh are taking place when India is part of the Quad alliance with the US, Australia and Japan. The Quad wants to enhance defense ties and move away from dependence on Russia as its primary military supplier.
India’s stance on Israel-Hamas conflict
India had earlier also strongly criticized Hamas while expressing solidarity with Israel on the lines of America. The talks aim to discuss the Gaza conflict and emphasize the shared goals of preventing its escalation, maintaining stability in the Middle East and promoting a two-state solution. The talks underline the Biden administration’s priority in strengthening ties with India amid the rise of China. India and its northern neighbor China have long been locked in a border dispute, with tensions further heightened by a deadly clash in the Himalayas in 2020. The shared border, spanning 3,500 kilometers (2,200 mi), remains a source of persistent tension.