US welcomes India’s involvement against China’s ‘aggressive behaviour’

US officials said that they are in talks with India about the increased cooperation in Southeast Asia

India-US
The 2+2 talks are crucial to strengthen defence and strategic ties between India and US | Photo: iStock

Senior US officials on Saturday (October 24) said that the country is closely monitoring the standoff in Ladakh and it does not want the situation to escalate between India and China, NDTV reported. The statement comes ahead of next week’s visit of US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and the US Secretary of Defence Mark Esper.

The US welcomed India’s military presence in South China Sea, encouraging cooperation with “like-minded partners such as India” to counter “China’s aggressive behaviour”.

In an online news briefing, US officials said they are in talks with India about the increased cooperation in Southeast Asia too and not just South China Sea. They said they encourage India’s involvement and that it cuts across development investments, security cooperation and involves presence.

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“So, we welcome the greater Indian participation across Southeast Asia in all three of those areas,” the report quoted them as saying. “Given China’s increasingly aggressive behaviour across the Indo-Pacific from the Himalayas to the South China Sea, it is more important than ever that we work with like-minded partners such as India.”

On the Ladakh crisis, the US said it is closely monitoring the situation in the Himalayas and wants to ensure that the situation does not escalate. It also hailed the defence relationship with India as the “best in recent memory” and the progress since 2016 as “remarkable”.

At the defence minister-level talks during Pompeo and Esper’s visit next week, regional security cooperation, defence information sharing, military-to-military interactions and defence trade will be discussed, the country said, according to the report.

Related news: Trump’s trip demonstrates value US places on ties with India: Pompeoenior US officials on Saturday (October 24) said that the country is closely monitoring the standoff in Ladakh and it does not want the situation to escalate between India and China, NDTV reported. The statement comes ahead of next week’s visit of US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and the US Secretary of Defence Mark Esper.

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