WASHINGTON: India and the United States are destined to be partners at the world stage due to their shared common values and outlooks on a wide range of issues, the Pentagon has said as US deputy secretary of defence Ashton Carter concluded his trip to New Delhi.
In his meetings with the India’s national security adviser, Shivshankar Menon, foreign secretary Sujatha Singh and defense secretary Radha Krishna Mathur, Carter reiterated that the US and India are “destined to be partners on the world stage due” to their shared common values and outlooks on a wide range of issues, Pentagon press secretary George Little said here on Wednesday.
During his visit from September 16 to 18, Carter discussed with Indian officials the forthcoming meeting in Washington between US President Barack Obama and Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and steps toward deepening the multifaceted US-Indo defence relationship, Little said.
“They held in-depth consultations on the ongoing political and security transitions in Afghanistan and other regional security issues, common multilateral engagements, joint military exercises, and the significant and growing defence trade between the two countries,” he said.
Carter and Indian officials discussed steps the US and India are taking to streamline their respective administrative processes and make bilateral defence trade more responsive and effective, he added.
“In addition to these meetings, deputy secretary Carter visited Hindan Air Force Station, where he was briefed by Indian Air Force pilots on India’s co-produced C-130J’s and recently procured C-17’s,” Little said.
Carter also hosted a meeting of senior representatives from the US and Indian defence industries focused on additional steps the US can take to remove barriers to bilateral defence trade, the Pentagon press secretary said.
Before travelling to India, Carter made stops in Afghanistan and Pakistan where he discussed regional and bilateral issues. Carter, according to American Forces Press Service, emphasised on the need to develop economic relationship between India and Pakistan.
“Their neighbour to the east is running away from them economically,” he said, adding that to develop its economy, Pakistan first needs peaceful relations with India to begin trading with them.
Pakistan is critical to US and regional security, Carter said. “Unless it’s part of the solution, it becomes part of the problem in Afghanistan,” he added.
“The government of Pakistan has flirted over time with using terrorism as an instrument of state policy,” Carter added.
“It is coming to the realisation that terrorism is a boomerang, and it comes back on you when you try to use it for your own purposes,” he was quoted as saying.