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US India Indo Pacific Partnership: India Pentagon At The Center Of American Vision Of A Free And Open Indo Pacific

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US India Indo Pacific Partnership: India Pentagon At The Center Of American Vision Of A Free And Open Indo Pacific

Washington : A senior Pentagon official in the US Defense Ministry said that India plays a central role in the US vision of a free and open Indo-Pacific. Officials underlined that they are now focused on the ‘long game’ in which partnership is being built in the future and shaping the ‘favorable balance of power’ in the Indo-Pacific amid China’s aggressive moves in the region. India’s capability is being supported. Assistant Secretary of Defense for Indo-Pacific Security Affairs Dr. Eli S. Ratner said that the US is supporting India’s military modernization.

“We see the India-US partnership as central to our vision of a free and open Indo-Pacific,” Ratner told a group of journalists during an event on Thursday. While there may be obstacles along the way, we are really focused on the long game of building our partnership in the future and supporting India’s ability to shape a favorable balance of power in the Indo-Pacific .’

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He said External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar is scheduled to meet Defense Minister Lloyd Austin at the Pentagon on Monday. The meeting comes after a long telephonic conversation between Defense Minister Rajnath Singh with Austin recently. Ratner said, “It has become really clear in view of these many ties that the relationship between the US and India today is much more closely linked than in our history. We are seeing that our strategic interests and shared vision for the region are merging and especially in the last few years we have taken a number of major steps which are built on our four basic agreements.

America is a supporter of India’s military modernization
The US, India and several other world powers have been talking about the need to ensure a free, free and thriving Indo-Pacific region in the backdrop of China’s increasing military activities in the region. China claims almost all of the disputed South China Sea, although Taiwan, the Philippines, Brunei, Malaysia and Vietnam claim parts of it. Beijing has built artificial islands and military installations in the South China Sea. Ratner said that the US is supporting India’s military modernization.

‘India and America will work together’
“This vision indicates our top priorities for the defense partnership,” he said. The first priority is the commitment of the Department to enhance India’s military capability and its deterrence capability and support its emergence as a defense industrial power.’ In practical terms, he said, this means that the US is going to work closely with India on co-production and co-development capabilities that will support India’s own defense modernization goals as well as its own across the region, including South and Southeast Asia. Ability to export partners at an affordable cost will support the goals. This is something that officials from both the countries have talked about during their recent meetings.

Both the countries are increasing their capabilities in the war zones.
He said the Defense Department is closely watching the near and medium term opportunities to co-produce key capabilities with India. He said that they are in good talks with the Government of India at the highest level about their priorities in that regard. “We are expecting more announcements on this front soon,” he said. The United States and India are striving to deepen their operational cooperation and coordination to counter and outdo their competitors in critical war zones.

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