Amid the ongoing global turbulence, India and the US are scheduled to hold the 2+2 meeting in New Delhi around November 9-10. The US Secretary of Defense Lloyd J. Austin and Secretary of State Antony Blinken are scheduled to meet External Affairs Minister S. Jaishankar and Defence Minister Rajnath Singh in the national capital, according to government sources.
During the meeting, the leaders are expected to discuss global and regional security issues, including the developing situation in the Middle East due to the Israel-Hamas war, they said.
The 2+2 Ministerial Dialogue is a diplomatic summit that has been held every year since 2018, initially between the Minister of External Affairs or Foreign Minister, and the Defence Minister of India with the Secretary of State and Secretary of Defence of the United States to discuss and work on common issues of concern.
India and the US have been holding these dialogues to further strengthen their strategic ties, and this would be the fifth edition of these parleys, they said.
The ongoing Russia-Ukraine war in Europe is also expected to be discussed, along with its repercussions on the region. The ongoing military standoff between India and China has entered its fourth year and has been part of the discussions between the two sides.
The US Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin is also expected to visit a key Indian military base. During the visit to the US, the Americans, too, had invited the Indian Defence Minister to an important military station.
The American side is also expected to push for military hardware cooperation, and India is likely to ask for the sharing of high-end technology for developing indigenous weapon systems.
India and the US have recently agreed to a USD 3 billion deal for supplying 31 MQ-9B Predator drones to the Indian defence forces. The US is also pushing for the sale of six additional P-8I surveillance planes.
The US has also been showcasing its bomber aircraft like the B-1 to Indian defence forces in different shows and exercises in recent times.