The United States and India held bilateral 2+2 inter-sessional meeting on Friday wherein they agreed to further strengthen consultation through US-India-Australia-Japan Quadrilateral consultations.During the virtual discussion, the US highlighted the importance of India’s status as a Major Defense Partner, growing military-to-military cooperation, and other defense priorities.
According to a press statement issued by the US Department of Defence, “The United States underscored the importance of India’s status as a Major Defense Partner, growing military-to-military cooperation, and other defense priorities. The two sides discussed a range of bilateral, regional, and multilateral issues, including combating COVID-19, counterterrorism, India’s membership on the UN Security Council, support for good governance and sustainable development in the Indo-Pacific region, and efforts to counteract recent destabilising actions in South Asia and the broader Indo-Pacific region.”
“Both sides agreed to further strengthen consultation through United States-India-Australia-Japan Quadrilateral consultations,” it said.During the meeting, both countries welcomed the opportunity to discuss the US-India Comprehensive Global Strategic Partnership, noting increased closeness and cooperation across multiple areas of the bilateral relationship.”Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary Thompson and Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary Helvey pledged to continue working with their Indian counterparts to advance the US-India partnership for the benefit of both countries, the region, and the world. They looked forward to preparing for the US-India 2+2 Ministerial Dialogue later this year,” the Defence Department said.
The Indian delegation was led jointly Vani Rao, Joint Secretary (Americas) in the Ministry of External Affairs and Somnath Ghosh, Joint Secretary (International Cooperation) in the Ministry of Defence. The US delegation was led jointly by Dean Thompson, Senior Bureau Official, Bureau of South and Central Asian Affairs in the US Department of State and David Helvey, Acting Assistant Secretary for Indo-Pacific Security Affairs in the US Department of Defense.