India, Russia first ever 2 plus 2 Ministerial Dialogue underway in New Delhi; Terrorism, situation in Afghanistan, maritime security, ASEAN are on agenda

The first-ever India Russia 22 Ministerial Dialogue is underway in New Delhi. Defence Minister Rajnath Singh and External Affairs Minister Dr. S Jaishankar are representing the Indian side in the 22 Dialogue and the Russian side is being represented by their Foreign Affairs Minister and Defence Minister.

In his opening remarks at the Dialogue, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh said this is a historic day in bilateral relations. He said India Russia defence cooperation have progressed in an unprecedented manner in recent times. He said India’s development needs are colossal and its defence challenges are legitimate, real and immediate. He added that India seeks partners that are sensitive and responsive towards its expectations and requirements. He hoped that Russia will remain a major partner for India.

Dr Jaishankar said in his opening remarks that India Russia ties have been time tested in a world that has changed so much and have been exceptionally steady. He said the Dialogue is a suitable platform to discuss politico-military issues of mutual interest. He said discussions today will address the emergence of multipolarity and rebalancing. Issues including terrorism, situation in Afghanistan, maritime security, and ASEAN will also be discussed.

Ahead of the Dialogue, Dr Jaishankar held a meeting with Russian Foreign Affairs Minister Sergey Lavrov. Dr Jaishankar said this is his 4th meeting this year with Mr Lavrov. He said this is symbolic of the special and privileged strategic partnership between India and Russia.

Meanwhile, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh also held a meeting with his Russian counterpart Sergei Shoigu. A number of Agreements were signed pertaining to small arms and military cooperation. The Minister said India deeply appreciates Russia’s strong support and hope that bilateral cooperation will bring peace,  prosperity and stability to the entire region.

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