Washington: US Secretary of State John Kerry and External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj co-chaired the first India-US Strategic and Commercial Dialogue on Global Issues.
The two sides recognized that the India-U.S. partnership was a significant contributor to the peace, stability and prosperity in the Indian Ocean and Asia-Pacific regions and around the globe.
Building on successful cooperation in Asia, the sides welcomed continued cooperation under the Joint Strategic Vision for the Asia-Pacific and Indian Ocean Region agreed by President Obama and Prime Minister Modi.
The U.S. side commended India’s leadership in evacuating foreign nationals, including U.S. citizens, from conflict in Yemen, as well as cooperation between the United States and India on providing earthquake relief in Nepal. The sides resolved that India and the United States would work as partners in responding to the needs of civilians in global crisis.
Recognising the centrality of peacekeeping to the UN’s efforts for maintenance of international peace and security, the two sides committed to enhance cooperation in peacekeeping capacity building in third countries with a focus on training aspects for UN peacekeepers, especially in identified African countries.
The two sides announced that the first ministerial meeting of the India-United States-Japan trilateral would convene on the margins of the UN General Assembly in September 2015. They also welcomed Japan’s participation in the MALABAR 2015 naval exercise later this year.
The U.S. affirms its support for India’s membership in the Missile Technology Control Regime at its upcoming plenary, the Nuclear Suppliers Group and in the other global non-proliferation export control regimes.
The two sides also pledged to continue high level consultations on Afghanistan, making clear the enduring commitment of India and United States to the Afghan people. They agreed that a sovereign, independent and prosperous Afghanistan is in the interest of peace and security in the region, and will contribute to the global efforts to combat terrorism and extremism.
Reflecting shared objectives in advancing nuclear non-proliferation, the two sides expressed support for the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) reached among the P5+1, the European Union, and Iran. They called for Iran’s timely and thorough implementation of the JCPOA.
In order to strengthen institutional cooperation between ministries, the sides announced a new Diplomacy Partnership between the Department of State and the Ministry of External Affairs which will include a new Policy Planning Dialogue and coordination on the training of their diplomats through collaboration between respective Foreign Service Institutes.
The two sides agreed to launch new High Level Consultations led by the U.S. Deputy Secretary of State and India’s Foreign Secretary.
The U.S. side reaffirmed its support for a reformed UN Security Council with India as a permanent member. Both sides committed to ensuring that the Security Council continues to play an effective role in maintaining international peace and security as envisioned in the UN Charter. Both sides are committed to continued engagement on Security Council reform in the UN Intergovernmental Negotiations (IGN) on Security Council Reform.
Committed to strengthening their bilateral cooperation, the sides pledged to work together to promote the responsible management and rules-based resolution of conflicts in shared maritime and space domains, and cyberspace.
The sides reflected on their shared commitment to peaceful use of the oceans, freedom of navigation, and protection of the ocean ecosystem. They agreed to explore a new Oceans Dialogue to promote sustainable development of the blue economy.
On cyber issues, the two sides supported an open, inclusive, transparent, and multi-stakeholder system of internet governance and planned to work together to promote cyber security, combat cyber crime, and advance norms of responsible state behaviour in cyberspace. They agreed to improve cooperation among technical, law enforcement, cyber R&D, and capacity building. They also commended the resumption of the U.S.-India Cyber Dialogue and welcomed the decision to convene a Track 1.5 program to further cooperation on internet and cyber issues and contribute to the goals of Digital India initiative.(ANI)