With China in mind, Ja­pan, In­dia agree to deepen de­fense

Daily Messenger - - Sportlight -

GANDHINAGAR, In­dia: The lead­ers of In­dia and Ja­pan agreed on Thurs­day to deepen de­fense ties and push for more co­op­er­a­tion with Aus­tralia and the United States, as they seek to counter grow­ing Chi­nese in­flu­ence across Asia.

Prime Min­is­ter Shinzo Abe ar­rived this week in his coun­ter­part Naren­dra Modi’s home state, skip­ping the tra­di­tion of vis­it­ing the cap­i­tal of New Delhi, for the tenth meet­ing be­tween two lead­ers since Modi came to power in 2014.

Re­la­tions have deep­ened be­tween Asia’s sec­ond and third largest economies as Abe and Modi, who en­joy a close per­sonal re­la­tion­ship, in­creas­ingly see eye-to-eye to bal­ance China as the dom­i­nant Asian power.

“Al­most ev­ery­thing that takes place dur­ing the visit, in­clud­ing eco­nomic deals, will in part be done with China in mind,” Eura­sia an­a­lysts said in a note.

Abe’s visit comes days af­ter New Delhi and Bei­jing agreed to end the long­est and most se­ri­ous mil­i­tary con­fronta­tion along their shared and con­tested bor­der in decades, a dis­pute that had raised wor­ries of a broader con­flict be­tween the Asian giants.

In a lengthy joint state­ment, In­dia and Ja­pan said deep­en­ing se­cu­rity links was para­mount. This in­cluded col­lab­o­ra­tion on re­search into un­manned ground ve­hi­cles and ro­bot­ics and the pos­si­bil­ity of joint field ex­er­cises be­tween their armies.

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