US describes India as an “all-weather partner”

The United States has said that the upcoming 2 (pulse) 2 dialogue with India is an important opportunity to enhance engagement on a range of diplomatic and security issues. 

Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary Alice Wells said that US Secretary of State Micheal Pompeo and Secretary of Defence James Mattis will travel to New Delhi on September 6th  for the 22 dialogue with India.

She was addressing a video conference on US Policy in the Indian Ocean Region from Washington on Monday.

Describing India as an “all-weather partner” she said India plays a central role in US national security.

Wells said the meeting will also discuss how India’s status as a major defense partner could be operationalised.

On a question about trade relations with India, Wells said opening up trade with India is a key strategic objective for the Trump administration.

The format of the 2 (pulse) 2 dialogue was agreed upon between the two sides during the visit of Prime Minister Narendra Modi to Washington in June 2017. 

Earlier, External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj and Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman were to travel to Washington to take part in the meeting with their US counterparts in July.

But the US had postponed the dialogue citing unavoidable reasons. India was designated a major defence partner by the US in 2016.

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