By Reena Bhardwaj
Washington DC [US], May 29 (ANI): External Affairs Minister (EAM) S Jaishankar met US Defence Secretary Lloyd Austin on Friday and reaffirmed their commitment of sustaining a free and open Indo-Pacific region and strengthening the US-India major Defense Partnership.
Jaishankar and Austin also exchanged views on a range of regional security challenges.
"I had a terrific meeting with Dr S Jaishankar today. He graciously hosted me in India in March, and I was delighted to return his hospitality. The @deptofdefense is deeply committed to strengthening our partnership with India as we work together to uphold a #FreeAndOpenIndoPacific," Defence Secy Austin tweeted.
"A warm meeting with US Defence Secretary Lloyd Austin. A comprehensive conversation about further developing our strategic and defence partnership. Exchanged views on contemporary security challenges. Expressed appreciation of the US military role in responding to the Covid situation," EAM Jaishankar tweeted.
"Secretary of Defense Lloyd J Austin III met with India's Minister of External Affairs, Dr. S. Jaishankar, in Washington, DC today to discuss shared priorities in the US-India strategic partnership and exchange views on a range of regional security challenges," the Pentagon Press Secretary John Kirby said in a statement.
Jaishankar and Austin reaffirmed their commitment and discussed opportunities to deepen coordination amid the resurgence of COVID-19 cases. Secretary Austin conveyed that he looks forward to hosting Jaishankar and Indian Defense Minister Rajnath Singh at the 2+2 Ministerial Dialogue later this year.
Earlier, US Defence Secretary Lloyd J Austin III visited New Delhi on a three-day visit to India from March 19 to 21 and met the top political and military leadership of the country. Jaishankar and Austin had a wide-ranging conversation on the global strategic situation. (ANI)