The 2+2 ministerial dialogue between India and the US took place in presence of EAM S. Jaishankar and Defence Minister Rajnath Singh, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Defence Secretary Mark Esper.
GT Desk, Delhi: India, on Tuesday took another big step towards being a strategic partner of the United States of America as the two countries signed Basic Exchange and Cooperation Agreement (BECA) here in New Delhi. The historic deal gives India a military and strategic edge over its opponents in the Indo-pacific.
India will have access to classified data and crucial military info after this deal that also brings the two nations even closer in the geopolitical sphere. India’s minister of defence, Rajnath Singh declared this significant move, while External Affairs Minister S. Jaishankar said that the Indo-American bilateral ties have grown in “substance, facets and significance.”
After the geo-spatial cooperation deal, EAM Jaishankar said, “We live in a more uncertain world with much greater stresses and sharper faultlines. For most countries, that means giving security a greater salience in their foreign policy. As major powers, this is even more so in our case.”
US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said that both countries’ goals are more or less similar — cooperation in defeating the Wuhan-born COVID-19 pandemic, confronting the China Communist Party’s threats to security & freedom, and promotion of peace & stability in the region.
Jaishankar and Pompeo were engaged in a long conversation on strengthening QUAD cooperation to counter the common enemy — The People’s Republic of China.
During the meeting that witnessed the historic deal, Rajnath Singh said that the military to military cooperation between India and the US is moving forward very well. “We have identified projects for joint development of defence equipment,” he added.
“Together, we can make a real difference when it comes to regional and global challenges, whether it is in respecting territorial integrity, promoting maritime domain awareness, countering terrorism or ensuring prosperity,” S. Jaishankar Said.
The deal’s timing becomes more significant in this context as it is happening just a week before the US Presidential elections, scheduled for 3 November, in which US President Donald Trump is seeking another term in the office, while Joe Biden fights for his first term as POTUS.