Mattis, Modi discuss Indo-U.S. cooperation
During the meeting, Modi appreciated the close engagement between India and the U.S. on regional and global issues of mutual concern, according to a PMO statement
NEW DELHI: Enhanced cooperation between India and the U.S., regionally and globally, in pursuing shared priorities for peace, stability and combating terrorism were discussed when visiting Secretary of Defence James Mattis met Prime Minister Narendra Modi here on Tuesday.
During the meeting, Modi appreciated the close engagement between India and the U.S. on regional and global issues of mutual concern, according to a PMO statement. The prime minister recalled his “wide-ranging, candid, and fruitful discussions” with President Donald Trump during his visit to the US in June this year, the statement said.
During that meeting between Modi and Trump, both sides had reaffirmed their resolve to further develop their strong strategic partnership. Mattis briefed the prime minister on the progress in advancing the bilateral agenda and implementing the decisions taken during that visit, the statement said.
Meanwhile, India on Tuesday ruled out any troop contribution in Afghanistan and said it will continue to provide development assistance to the war-torn country.
This was stated by Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman after her talks with her U.S. counterpart James Mattis during which they discussed key bilateral, regional and international issues, including terrorism emanating from across the border.
Amid the rising tensions due to the recent missile tests by North Korea and growing Chinese assertiveness in the South China Sea, the two sides also deliberated upon ways to deepen maritime security cooperation in the IndoPacific region.
Referring to their discussion on Afghanistan, Sitharaman said they had a useful interaction on how the two countries could strengthen cooperation bilaterally as well as with the Afghan government in pursuit of the common objective of a peaceful, democratic, stable and prosperous Afghanistan.
She said India has built dams, hospitals and it will continue providing development assistance to the war-torn country.
“We give them facilities in our hospitals both for those who are wounded on field and for civilians. Those assistances for medical help will continue...We shall expand if necessary. However, of course, we have made it clear that there shall not be boots from India on the ground,” she said.
Sitharaman made the remarks while replying to a question during a joint press briefing with Mattis on whether India will contribute troops in Afghanistan.
India’s position assumes significance given that under the new Trump policy, the U.S. wants greater participation by India to contribute more in the war-torn nation. Full story @ timesofoman.com/world
DIALOGUE: Prime Minister Narendra Modi with U.S. Defence Secretary, Jim Mattis in a meeting in New Delhi on Tuesday.