India, US committed to safeguard “open, inclusive” Indo-Pacific”: US Ambassador Eric Garcetti


India and the United States have made important steps towards strengthening their defense partnership, American ambassador to India Eric Garcetti said on Monday. He said the two countries are committed to promoting resilient and rules-based international order to safeguard “free open and inclusive” Indo-Pacific.

Garcetti said that during the India-US 2+2 Ministerial Dialog, the ministers of both countries discussed the ongoing conflicts in Ukraine and the Middle East.

Speaking at an event in New Delhi, Garcetti said, “I think the joint statement (2+2 Dialog) reflects both countries’ resolve to promote resilient rules-based international order to safeguard free open and inclusive Indo-Pacific through the Quad and other metrics, global issues. The ministers discussed the tragic humanitarian consequences to the conflict in Ukraine and the Middle East, reiterating their stance with Israel against terrorism, but also seeking to alleviate civilian suffering and adherence to international humanitarian law.”

The US ambassador further said that the US is looking forward to welcoming more visitors from India in December and January, and many major investments in Indian technology by US private sector companies as well. He said government-to-government conversations on expanding collaboration around space, defense, and manufacturing were progressing well.

“We made important steps toward strengthening our major defense partnership which continues to grow, increasing the acceleration that we have seen through initiatives like the roadmap US-India in industrial cooperation and defense.”

He said New Delhi and Washington should deepen their Artificial Intelligence (AI) conversation. “India-US collaboration and cooperation in emerging domains, and also more importantly, because we sometimes just focus on weapons and what’s being sold, or potentially co-developed. But the operational level of our militaries, which I think is as critical as any equipment, and our countries discuss ways to deepen our science and our technology partnerships to harness technology with the global good instead of technology that harms us than divides us, technology that can connect us and protect us,” he said.

Garcetti announced that the US administration is in conversation with the Indian government to get more staff at consulates and is also speeding up visas.

The India-US 2+2 Ministerial Dialog was held in the New Delhi in the second week of November. External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar and Defense Minister Rajnath Singh participated in the meeting with their US counterparts; Secretary of State Antony Blinken and Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin III.

The dialog provides a platform for top-level discussions between the US and India, where the leaders of the US and India discuss critical bilateral and global matters, with a special emphasis on developments unfolding in the Indo-Pacific region.