India, one of the largest contributors in Afghanistan where it in involved in several development projects.
NEW DELHI: The U.S. defence secretary arrived in the Indian capital late on Monday night on a two-day visit to this country.
Visiting US Defence Secretary James Mattis and Defence Minister Nirmala Sitaraman today spoke in one voice for zero tolerance to safe havens for terrorists.
India on Tuesday ruled out deploying troops in Afghanistan but reiterated its participation in the war-torn country’s development activities. This is the first Cabinet-level visit from the US to India under the Trump administration.
Indian Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman made the country’s stance on Afghanistan clear to her visiting U.S. counterpart James Mattis during the delegation-level talks in the national capital.
Sitharaman added that she had requested the US Defence Secretary to raise the issue of cross border terrorism and safe havens when and if he visited Pakistan.
“Defence cooperation between India and the US has grown significantly in recent years and emerged as a key pillar of our strategic partnership,” she said.
The two leaders are likely to discuss the US’ new Afghan strategy and the developments in the India-Pacific, amid increasing Chinese assertiveness in the region.
Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman said there was a growing convergence between India and the US over the issue of terrorism in the region.