by Tripti Nath in New Delhi;-
India and the United States are set for “comprehensive discussion of mutual interest” during the upcoming visit of two top leaders to New Delhi later this month for the ministerial dialogue amid a border as well as trade face off with China, officials said.
The time of the visit of the two top leaders also comes just days ahead of the U.S. elections and will return home before the polling armed with critical inputs on the political mood of the Indian leadership.
The third edition of the 2+2 ministerial dialogue scheduled for October 27 brings together in New Delhi the U.S. Secretary of State, Michael R. Pompeo and Secretary of Defence, Mark T. Esper and India’s External Affairs and Defence Ministers.
It is also worth noting that India is the first stop in the multi-nation six-day itinerary of Pompeo and Esper. Between October 25 and 30, they will also travel to Sri Lanka, the Maldives and Indonesia.
The US Deputy Secretary of State Stephan Biegun was in Bangladesh recently and made it clear that Washington wanted Dhaka as his country moved into the India-Pacific Strategy.
Biegun noted that a number of challenges and tensions in the Indo-Pacific region have alarmed the US and other regional countries in a possible reference to China.
Bangladesh Foreign Minister AK Abdul Momen has said that Bangladesh was increasingly becoming important to the world because of its economic growth and geo-political strategies.
Replying to a question at the weekly media briefing on Thursday, a spokesman for the Indian Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) said that the two Secretaries will jointly call on Prime Minister Narendra Modi during their two day visit starting October 26. They will also meet the National Security Advisor and will have bilateral meetings with their respective counterparts.
The previous two editions of the India- U.S 2 plus 2 dialogue were held in New Delhi in September 2018 and in Washington D.C. in December 2019.
The spokesman said the dialogues will help both sides to further bilateral relationship and have a comprehensive global strategic partnership which includes political, security and defence, economic, commercial, technology and people to people contacts.
A statement issued on Wednesday by Morgan Ortagus, Spokesperson of the U.S. Department of State said that while leading their respective delegations, the two Secretaries and their Indian counterparts will aim at advancing the comprehensive global strategic partnership focusing on expanding cooperation to promote stability and prosperity in the Indo-Pacific region and the world at large.