US Secretary of Defence Lloyd Austin arrives in India, meets PM Modi

WION Web Team
New Delhi Published: Mar 19, 2021, 05:13 PM(IST)

Lloyd Austin with PM Modi Photograph:( Twitter )

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US Secretary of Defence Lloyd Austin has arrived in India.

US Defense Secretary Lloyd J Austin arrived in India for a three-day visit on Thursday. He called on Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi on the very first day of his visit.

As he landed in India, Lloyd tweeted that he was "thrilled" to be in the country.

"Thrilled to be here in India. The breadth of cooperation between our two nations reflects the significance of our major defense partnership, as we work together to address the most pressing challenges facing the Indo-Pacific region," he tweeted.

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PM Modi after his meet with Austin tweeted that Indo-US partnership was a force for global good.

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On Friday, Austin also met India's National Security Advisor Ajit Doval

"Secretary Austin commended India's leadership role in the Indo-Pacific and growing engagement with like-minded partners across the region to promote shared goals," according to a readout by the US department of defence.

"The two sides reaffirmed their commitment to promote a free and open regional order. Both sides exchanged perspectives on shared challenges confronting the region and committed to further strengthen their broad ranging and robust defence cooperation," the readout added.

Welcoming Austin, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh said his visit to India is definitely going to further deepen the cooperation and partnership between two countries. Austin and Singh are scheduled to hold bilateral talks on Saturday.

Austin's visit to India came days after the top leadership of the Quad grouping of the US, India, Japan and Australia vowed to expand their cooperation in the Indo-Pacific amidst China's aggressive actions in the region.

(With PTI inputs)

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