Doval, Pompeo, Esper discuss ways to deepen Indo-US ties
New Delhi, Oct 27: During the meeting of National Security Advisor, Ajit Doval and US Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo, both sides highlighted the need to build capabilities across all domains.
Pompeo who is on a four nation tour made his first stop in India along with US defence chief, Mike Esper for the 2+2 dialogue. During the discussions, Doval, Pompeo and Esper discussed ways to deepen the relationship between the two countries. Issues relating to regional and global security were also discussed.
The two officials also touched upon the China issue and the military standoff along the Line of Actual Control (LAC) in eastern Ladakh. Reports in the US media have said that Pompeo would build support for countries to push the Chinese aggressiveness back.
Pompeo and Esper also sealed the Basic Exchange and Cooperation Agreement (BECA) at the 2+2 talks with Defence Minister, Rajnath Singh and External Affairs Minister, S Jaishankar.
India and the United State signed the Basic Exchange and Cooperation Agreement (BECA) on the sidelines of the 2+2 dialogue. This would enable exchange of geospatial information between the two countries. It would also enhance operational efficiency of the defence platforms of the United States that are being operated in India.
Sources tell OneIndia that both sides discussed an agreement on the maritime domain awareness cooperation. This pact would institutionalise sharing of information bilaterally on the potential sea borne security threats. It is an important move as it would also help in keeping a close watch on the activities by the Chinese People's Liberation Army Navy.
The BECA would also pave the way for sharing of maps, charts, imagery and other geospatial information and data. This would include geodetic, geophysical, geomagnetic and gravity data.
The first pact that India had signed with the US was the Logistics Exchange Memorandum of Agreement (LEMOA). The pact signed in 2016 made it obligatory for both India and the US to support each other's aircraft, ships, personnel with logistics, spares and fuel.
The BECA will be the last of the four foundational pacts. Washington had promised India that these would make it easier for India access advanced military technologies from the US. This had in fact paved the way for better defence partnerships between the two nations.
India and the US had also signed the Communications Compatibility and Security Agreement in 2018. This facilitated India's access to advanced defence systems of the US. Due to this India was allowed optimally to use existing military hardware sourced from the US.
The Industrial Security Annexe was signed in 2019 to be added to the existing General Security of Military Information Agreement. The ISA provided a framework for exchange and protection of classified military information between India and the US.
According to officials, BECA, which is the last of four foundational agreements for boosting defence ties, will be signed during the third edition of the 2+2 dialogue between the two countries on Tuesday.
Ahead of the Tuesday's dialogue, both Singh and External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar held separate talks with their US counterparts.
In a tweet, Esper said the partnership of "our two great nations is vital to peace and stability in the Indo-Pacific."
On the meeting between Jaishankar and Pompeo, official sources said they discussed "shared concerns and interests" including stability and security in Asia as well as the situation in the Indo-Pacific region.