India and the US have discussed their flourishing defence partnership and opportunities for enhanced cooperation with like-minded partners to sustain a free and open Indo-Pacific as officials from the two countries held a meeting to lay the groundwork for the key 2+2 Ministerial Dialogue later this year, the Pentagon has said.
The meeting was co-chaired by Defence Secretary Ajay Kumar and US Under Secretary of Defence for Policy Colin Kahl yesterday.
The Pentagon said that the 16th US-India Defence Policy Group meeting laid the groundwork for an important 2+2 Ministerial Dialogue later this year, as the US and India opened a new chapter in the Major Defence Partnership.
"The Dialogue advanced an ambitious set of bilateral priorities -- including information-sharing, high-end maritime cooperation, logistics and defence trade -- reflective of the flourishing defense ties between the United States and India," said Defense Department Spokesman Lieutenant Colonel Anton T Semelroth.
US and Indian officials exchanged views on regional issues of shared interest, including in South Asia and the Indian Ocean Region, he said.
They also discussed opportunities for enhanced cooperation with like-minded partners to sustain a free and open Indo-Pacific, the official said.
"The leaders reinforced their commitment to deepening joint cooperation and interoperability between the US and Indian militaries to work more seamlessly together, including strengthening cooperation in new defence domains, such as space and cyber," Lieutenant Colonel Semelroth added.
The 2+2 dialogue between India and the US would be held in November this year, Foreign Secretary Harsh Vardhan Shringla had said last month.