EAM Jaishankar meets visiting US Defence Secretary Lloyd Austin

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New Delhi, Mar 20 (PTI) External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar on Saturday held discussions with US Defence Secretary Lloyd Austin on a range of issues including key global developments.

Lloyd flew into India on Friday as part of his three-nation first overseas tour that signalled the Biden administration's strong commitment to its relations with its close allies and partners in the Indo-Pacific region. He visited Japan and South Korea before arriving here.

'Welcomed US @SecDef Lloyd Austin at MEA. A wide-ranging conversation on the global strategic situation. Look forward to working with him on enhancing our strategic partnership,' Jaishankar tweeted.

Earlier in the day, Austin and Defence Minister Rajnath Singh held 'comprehensive' talks that saw both sides resolving to further consolidate their robust defence partnership through deeper military-to-military engagement, information sharing and logistics cooperation.

In his media statement, Austin said India is an 'increasingly important partner amid today's rapidly shifting international dynamics and I reaffirmed our commitment to a comprehensive and forward-looking defense partnership with India as a central pillar of our approach to the region.' On Friday, Austin called on Prime Minister Narendra Modi and held talks with National Security Advisor Ajit Doval.

'Great meeting with National Security Advisor Doval last night. The breadth of collaboration between our two nations reflects the significance of our Major Defense Partnership as we work together to address the most pressing challenges facing the Indo-Pacific region,' he tweeted. PTI MPB TIR TIR