Washington: US President Barack Obama and Prime Minister Narendra Modi have pledged to intensify cooperation in maritime security to ensure freedom of navigation in comments that came against the backdrop of China's expanding maritime ambitions.
A US-India Joint statement issued at the end of summit talks between Obama and Modi at the White House said the two sides also considered enhancing technology partnerships for India's navy including assessing possible areas of technology cooperation.
"The leaders agreed to intensify cooperation in maritime security to ensure freedom of navigation and unimpeded movement of lawful shipping and commercial activity, in accordance with the accepted principles of international law.”
To achieve this objective the two sides considered enhancing technology partnerships for India's Navy including assessing possible areas of technology cooperation, the statement said while dealing with issues relating to Defense and Homeland Security cooperation.
The two sides also agreed to upgrade their existing bilateral exercise MALABAR.
The annual MALABAR exercise includes diverse activities, ranging from fighter combat operations to aircraft carriers, through Maritime Interdiction Operations Exercises.