Officials from United States and India attended 2+2 Ministerial Dialogue meeting on Friday to discuss the diplomatic stance on the Indo-Pacific region as well as peace and stability in Afghanistan, Indian media reported on Saturday.
Alice Wells, the Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary of State and Assistant Secretary of Defense Randall Schriver met India’s Joint Secretary of the Ministry of External Affairs Gourangalal Das and Joint Secretary of India’s Ministry of Defense Shambhu Kumaran for an inter-sessional 2+2 Ministerial Dialogue between US and India, the US Embassy in India said in a statement as quoted by ANI.
“The two sides discussed our strong strategic partnership and ways to advance our cooperation on critical diplomatic and security priorities, including our shared vision of a free and open Indo-Pacific region and a stable and prosperous Afghanistan,” said the statement.
The first round of the 2+2 talks was held in New Delhi last year in September, ANI said in a report.
The 2+2 Dialogue between India and the United States was launched as a reflection of the shared commitment made by India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi and US President Donald Trump to provide a positive, forward-looking vision for the India-US strategic partnership and to promote synergy in their diplomatic and security affairs, the statement said.
This comes as the US Special Representative for Afghanistan Reconciliation Zalmay Khalilzad met India’s External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj and Foreign Secretary Vijay Gokhale in New Delhi on Friday where they discussed the Afghan peace process and the situation in Afghanistan.
In this meeting, Indian officials emphasized that the peace and reconciliation process in the Afghanistan “must be Afghan-led, Afghan-owned and Afghan-controlled”.
Indian media quoted Raveesh Kumar, India’s External Affairs Ministry spokesman, as saying that Khalilzad briefed the Indian side on the efforts being made by Washington aimed at peace and reconciliation in Afghanistan.