India, US Hold Fifth 2+2 Ministerial Dialogue, Blinken Meets Jaishankar

New Delhi: India and the US on Friday held extensive discussions in the 2+2 ministerial dialogue to further increase their global strategic partnership through greater defence industrial ties, enhancing engagement in the Indo-Pacific and boosting cooperation in key areas like high-technology and critical minerals.

The US delegation was led by US Secretary of State Antony Blinken and US Defence Secretary Lloyd Austin. External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar and Defence Minister Rajnath Singh were part of the Indian side.

“We are exploring cooperation in new domains such as critical technologies, collaboration in civil outer space and in areas of critical minerals,” Jaishankar said.

In his remarks, Blinken said both sides are promoting a free and open, prosperous, secure and resilient Indo-Pacific including by strengthening the US-India partnership through the Quad.

In his opening comments, Singh said, “Defence cooperation remains one of the most important pillars of our bilateral relationship.”

US Defence Secretary Austin, in his opening remarks, said in the face of urgent global challenges, it is more important than ever that the world’s two largest democracies exchange views, find common goals and “deliver for our people”.

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