The Biden administration goes to stay dedicated to a powerful bilateral relationship with India, the Pentagon has mentioned, a day after US Defence Secretary Lloyd Austin spoke for the primary time with Defence Minister Rajnath Singh.
“The Secretary made it very clear that we’ll stay dedicated to a powerful US-India bilateral relationship,” Pentagon Press Secretary John Kirby informed reporters at a information convention right here on Thursday.
“(They) had an excellent chat yesterday. They mentioned a variety of points, together with our two nations’ response to the coronavirus,” Kirby mentioned responding to a query on the maiden cellphone name between Austin and Singh.
Retired normal Austin grew to become the primary African-American to guide the Pentagon when the Senate confirmed him as US Defence Secretary on January 22.
Throughout his dialog with Singh on Wednesday, Austin pledged to work collaboratively with India to maintain the progress within the bilateral defence relationship, the Pentagon mentioned earlier.
“In the course of the name, Secretary Austin emphasised the Division’s dedication to the US-India Main Defence Partnership, observing that it’s constructed upon shared values and a standard curiosity in making certain the Indo-Pacific area stays free and open,” Kirby mentioned on Wednesday.
“Secretary Austin famous the nice strides made within the US-India defence relationship, and he pledged to work collaboratively with the Defence Minister to maintain progress,” Kirby mentioned in a readout of the decision.
The Indo-US defence ties have been on an upswing in the previous few years and in June 2016, the US had designated India a “Main Defence Associate”.
The 2 international locations have additionally inked key defence and safety pacts over the previous few years, together with the Logistics Trade Memorandum of Settlement (LEMOA) in 2016 that enables their militaries use one another’s bases for restore and replenishment of provides in addition to supplies for deeper cooperation.
The 2 sides have additionally signed COMCASA (Communications Compatibility and Safety Settlement) in 2018 that gives for interoperability between the 2 militaries and supplies on the market of excessive finish expertise from the US to India.