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Analysis Of Sansad TV Discussion: ”Fourth Round Of India-US 2+2 Dialogue”

Analysis Of Sansad TV Discussion: ”Fourth Round Of India-US 2+2 Dialogue”

Relevance

”GS 2: Government Policies & Interventions, Bilateral Groupings & Agreements”

Context

  • The fourth round of 2+2 ministerial talks between India and the US was held in Washington Yesterday (April 11, 2022).
  • India’s External Affairs and Defence Ministers, S Jaishankar and Rajnath Singh, met with their American counterparts, Secretary of State Anthony Blinken and Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin.

Importance of this years’ dialogue

  • The 2+2 Dialogue gives top priority to strategic, defence and security ties.
  • It has been 75 years since the establishment of diplomatic relations between India and America.
  • Especially today, when the world is divided into many factions in the midst of the Russo-Ukraine war, America is repeatedly expressing disappointment about India’s stand.

What are 2+2 talks between India and its allies?

  • India has 2+2 dialogues with four key strategic partners: the US, Australia, Japan, and Russia. Besides Russia, the other three countries are also India’s partners in the Quad.
  • It is a format of meeting of the foreign and defence ministers of India and its allies on strategic and security issues.
  • A 2+2 ministerial dialogue enables the partners to better understand and appreciate each other’s strategic concerns and sensitivities taking into account political factors on both sides, in order to build a stronger, more integrated strategic relationship in a rapidly changing global environment.

About India-US 2+2

  • The US is India’s oldest and most important 2+2 talks partner.
  • The first 2+2 dialogue between the two countries was held during the Trump Administration when then-Secretary of State Michael Pompeo and then-Secretary of Defence James Mattis met the late Sushma Swaraj and then Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman in New Delhi in September 2018.
  • The launch of the dialogue was seen as a “reflection of the shared commitment” by India and the US to provide “a positive, forward-looking vision for the India-US strategic partnership and to promote synergy in their diplomatic and security efforts”.
  • The second and third editions of the 2+2 dialogues were held in Washington DC and New Delhi in 2019 and 2020 respectively.

What has been achieved to date through India-US 2+2 dialogue?

  • Over the years, the strategic bilateral relationship with its partners, including the dialogues held in the 2+2 format, have produced tangible and far-reaching results for India.
  • India and the US have signed a troika of “foundational pacts” for deep military cooperation, beginning with the Logistics Exchange Memorandum of Agreement (LEMOA) in 2016, followed by the Communications Compatibility and Security Agreement (COMCASA) after the first 2+2 dialogue in 2018, and then the Basic Exchange and Cooperation Agreement (BECA) in 2020.
  • The strengthening of the mechanisms of cooperation between the two militaries are of significance in the context of an increasingly aggressive China, which threatens a large number of countries in its neighbourhood and beyond, and which has been challenging several established norms and aspects of international relations.

Key talks & commitments from yesterday’s 2+2 dialogue

Global Partnership and Indo-Pacific Cooperation

  • Ministers Looking forward to the next Quad Leaders’ Summit in b
  • They further reaffirmed their dedication to promoting regional stability and prosperity, with an inclusive regional architecture, abiding by the rule of law, the freedom of navigation and overflight, peaceful resolution of disputes, and ASEAN centrality.
  • They also reiterated the importance of adherence to international law to meet challenges to the rules-based order, including in the South China Sea.
  • Considering growing national security threats from both state and non-state malicious cyber actors, the Ministers recognized the importance of an open, interoperable, secure, and reliable Internet and stable cyberspace.
  • The United States welcomed India’s commitment to participate in multilateral peacekeeping training in 2022.
  • The Ministers called on the Taliban to abide by UNSC Resolution 2593 (2021), which demands that Afghan territory must never again be used to threaten or attack any country or to shelter or train terrorists, or to plan or finance terrorist attacks.
  • The Ministers called for the cessation of violence in Myanmar.

Mutual Prosperity, Innovation, and Resilient Supply Chains

  • The Ministers reaffirmed the vital role of secure, resilient, reliable, and diverse supply chains for Critical and Emerging Technologies (CET), and the need to enable regional and global innovation.
  • The Ministers noted the substantial progress in negotiations for an Investment Incentive Agreement (IIA)

Climate, Environment, and Clean Energy

  • The Ministers commended ongoing engagement under the two main tracks of the India-U.S. Climate and Clean Energy Agenda 2030 Partnership – the Climate Action and Finance Mobilization Dialogue (CAFMD) and the Strategic Clean Energy Partnership (SCEP).

Science, Technology, Cybersecurity, and Space

  • They applauded the ongoing development of the NASA-ISRO Synthetic Aperture Radar (NISAR) satellite, planned for launch from India in 2023.
  • The NISAR mission will collect data vital to tackling the climate crisis. The Ministers also looked forward to the convening of the next India-U.S. Civil Space Joint Working Group in 2022.’
  • The Ministers expressed appreciation for the continued cooperation between the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and India’s Ministry of Earth Science (MoES) and ISRO in areas such as ocean and fisheries science, meteorology, and earth observation.

Global Health

  • The Ministers looked forward to the expansion of the USAID-supported COVID-19 Learning Exchange virtual platform.

Defence and Security

  • The Ministers commended the significant and continuing progress in the India-U.S. Major Defense Partnership.
  • The Ministers welcomed regular bilateral logistics operations such as replenishments at sea, air-to-air and ground-refuelling and committed to increasing such cooperation, including through the Logistics Exchange Memorandum of Agreement (LEMOA).
  • Both sides reaffirmed the importance of regular bilateral and multilateral exercises, including the MALABAR exercise with inclusion of Australia, the tri-service TIGER TRIUMPH exercise, the multilateral MILAN naval exercise, the bilateral YUDH ABHYAS and VAJRA PRAHAR Army exercises, the bilateral COPE India air exercise, and Indian participation in RED FLAG.

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