India, US hold first '2+2' talks: All details here

07 September, 2018, 02:50 | Author: Kim Reid
  • Indo-US 2+2 Dialogue a Chance to Address Specifics in Context of Larger Geo Political Goals

There are sticking points, however, including the purchase of the Russian S-400 ground-to-air missile system, which could trigger U.S. sanctions on India. They underscore the worldwide community's scrutiny over the threat of terrorism emanating from Pakistan, which has affected India and the United States alike. "On the 10th anniversary of the 26/11 attacks, we recognized the importance of justice and retribution for the masterminds behind this terrorist attack", Swaraj said.

While Pompeo termed the 'Communications, Compatibility, Security Agreement (COMCASA)' agreement a "milestone" in the relationship, Sitharaman asserted that the pact will enhance India's defence capability and preparedness.

India signed a path-breaking agreement with the United States which will allow Indian defence forces to receive military-grade communications equipment from the U.S. and ensure access to real-time encrypted information. COMCASA will enable the Indian military to access critical and encrypted American defence technologies.

Great significance is being attached to the COMCASA agreement that will enable India to access advanced United States defence systems and optimally utilise its existing US-origin platforms.

Iran also "wasn't a big topic", he said.

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Another US official reportedly said that India's shopping list includes advanced drones, helicopters and fighter jets, including F-16 and F-18 aircraft to replace Russian models.

Top Indian and United States officials on Thursday touted deepening ties that will see greater cooperation between the two countries' militaries and will likely result in India buying more American arms.

"We talked about their new government, the opportunity to reset the relationship between our two countries across a broad spectrum - economic and business and commercial", Pompeo explained, adding that Washington desired improved ties in all aspects.

"In our meeting today, we also agreed to work together to secure India's membership of the Nuclear Suppliers' Group at the earliest", said Minister for External Affairs Sushma Swaraj, in a statement to the media after the meeting.

"We also discussed the situation in South Asia in some detail".

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Modi, he notes, is long past the days when, as the top official in the Indian state of Gujarat, he was denied a U.S. visa because of accusations he did not do enough to quell 2002 Hindu-Muslim riots.

As for what weapons India is looking at purchasing from the US, Director of the US Defense Security Cooperation Agency, Lieutenant General Charlie Hooper, said simply that discussions were underway to sell "many, many systems" to India, according to The Financial Times. Sales of US military equipment to India have increased considerably over the past decade, and the United States is now India's second-largest arms supplier. "Our effort here is not to penalize great strategic partners like India".

Seperately, Dunford said, "India is one of our premier security partners and an important and influential global leader".

"Our two nations are united by shared values of democracy, respect for individual rights and a shared commitment to freedom", stated Secretary Pompeo.

Swaraj also said given strong bilateral ties, India has conveyed to US Secretary Pompeo its expectation that US will not "act against" interests of Indians while taking a decision on H1B visa issue.

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