India and the United States (US) on Friday, 10 November, concluded their 5th India-US Ministerial Dialogue in New Delhi, having covered a range of subjects, including the Israel-Hamas war, the future of the Indo-Pacific region, and the Russia-Ukraine war.
The meeting was conducted between Defence Minister Rajnath Singh and External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar and their US counterparts Lloyd Austin and Antony Blinken respectively. The two delegations also released a joint statement following their discussions.
Here are the key highlights of the meeting:
1. Noting the "terrorist" attacks against Israel, the US and India reiterated their stand with the country against terrorism and called for adherence to international humanitarian law, including with regard to the protection of civilians. They also called for an immediate release of all remaining hostages.
2. The delegations committed to continue coordinating with partners in West Asia on humanitarian assistance to meet the "urgent needs of Palestinian civilians in Gaza".
3. The delegations also discussed developments in the Indo-Pacific region and Ukraine, and expressed "mutual deep concern" over the war in Ukraine and its "tragic humanitarian consequences". Both countries pledged to continue providing humanitarian assistance to the people of Ukraine and concurred on the need for post-conflict reconstruction in the country.
4. The countries reaffirmed their commitment to further deepen their defence partnership and accelerated joint projects initiated under the June 2023 Roadmap for India-US "Defense Industrial Cooperation".
5. They also overviewed the commencement of negotiations for a commercial agreement between General Electric (GE) Aerospace and Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) to manufacture GE F-414 jet engines in India.
6. Both sides recommitted to spurring investment in India’s growing MRO (maintenance, repair, and overhaul) sector, which encompasses aircraft maintenance and mid-voyage repair of US naval vessels.
7. The ministers unequivocally condemned terrorism and and the use of terrorist proxies and logistical, financial or military support to terrorist organisations. They reiterated their condemnation of the 26/11 Mumbai attack and the Pathankot attack and called for bringing the perpetrators of these attacks to justice.
8. The delegations called on the Taliban to adhere to their commitment to prevent any group or individual from using the territory of Afghanistan to threaten the security of any country.
9. The two sides further reaffirmed the importance of a free, open, and inclusive Indo-Pacific and renewed their shared desire to consolidate their dialogue and collaboration through the Quad (India, US, Australia, Japan). They also appreciated the ongoing efforts of the I2U2 (India, Israel, US, UAE) countries to enhance food and energy security and improve the movement of people and goods.
10. The US reaffirmed its continued support for India’s permanent membership in a reformed United Nations Security Council (UNSC) and welcomed India’s candidature for the UNSC non-permanent seat in 2028-29.