March 3rd, 2006 03:41 EST
U.S., India Seek Durable Defense Partnership
Washington –- The United States and India want to pursue a durable defense partnership, the Defense Department says.
In conjunction with President Bush’s trip to India, the Defense Department issued a statement March 2 that points out examples of recent U.S.-Indian military cooperation and predicts the conclusion of an agreement in the near future on logistics support.
The March 2 statement cites defense trade and technology cooperation as a vital component of the relationship because it helps “ to build ties among our defense establishments and industries and to develop interoperability among our armed forces.”
The U.S. goal, according to the release, is to help meet India's defense needs and “to provide important capabilities and technologies that India seeks.” The statement cites the U.S. commitment to providing India with a modern fighter aircraft.
The Defense Department also issued a fact sheet on the U.S.-India defense relationship. In addition to providing names, dates and locations of recent joint military exercises, it says the United States plans to transfer an amphibious transport ship to India in 2007.
It also notes a U.S. delegation soon will be sent to India to discuss U.S. plans related to the recently issued Quadrennial Defense Review. (See related article.)
The Indo-U.S. Framework for Maritime Security Cooperation also has been released by the Defense Department. The framework commits the two nations to “comprehensive cooperation in ensuring a secure maritime domain.”
The U.S and India governments have agreed jointly to concern themselves with piracy, “transnational organized crimes in all dimensions; the illicit trafficking in weapons of mass destruction, their delivery systems, and related materials; environmental degradation; and natural disasters.” This will be accomplished through regular bilateral “maritime security policy and implementation discussions in the Defense Policy Group, the Naval Executive Steering Group, and Military Cooperation Group,” according to the framework.
The March 2 statement, the fact sheet on the U.S.-India defense relationship and the framework for maritime security are available on the Defense Department Web site.
For more information on U.S. policy toward India, see U.S.-India: Strengthening a Global Partnership.