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US Security Adviser Jake Sullivan meets Jaishankar in Delhi, discusses bilateral, regional and global issues

Sullivan, who is currently in the national capital with a high-level delegation, met External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar. The two officials discussed a wide range of issues including bilateral, regional and global issues.

Written By: Ajeet Kumar @Ajeet1994 New Delhi Updated on: June 17, 2024 13:01 IST
US National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan with S Jaishankar in Delhi
Image Source : @DRSJAISHANKAR/X US National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan with S Jaishankar in Delhi

New Delhi: US National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan arrived in India on Monday-- marking Biden's first official engagement with New Delhi after the Narendra Modi-led government took charge last week. Sullivan, who is currently in the national capital with a high-level delegation, met External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar. The two officials discussed a wide range of issues including bilateral, regional and global issues. 

Notably, the meeting came a day after Indian national Nikhil Gupta, who is accused of being involved in a murder-for-hire plot against a Khalistan leader Gurupatwant Singh Pannun, has been extradited from the Czech Republic. Although it was not officials mentioned whether the duo discussed the matter related to Gupta during the meeting, people familiar with the matter suggested the development would be taken care of.

Sullivan met Doval

According to the sources, the meeting was focused on reviewing overall progress in the implementation of the ambitious iCET initiative. Besides, the top Biden administration official also held wide-ranging talks with NSA Ajit Doval, primarily focusing on cooperation under the US-India Initiative on Critical and Emerging Technologies (iCET), they said.

Sullivan’s visit to India was discussed during a phone call between US President Joe Biden and Prime Minister Narendra Modi last week. Biden called up Modi to congratulate him on his re-election for a third term. “President Joseph R Biden, Jr spoke today with Prime Minister Narendra Modi of India to congratulate him and the National Democratic Alliance on their historic victory in India’s general election,” the White House said in a readout following the call.

The US National Security Advisor called off a visit to India for the review of iCET twice this year in view of the US administration’s focus on the evolving situation in West Asia arising out of the Israel-Hamas conflict. A key aspect of Indo-US engagement has been collaboration in specific high-technology areas including semiconductors, next-generation telecommunication, artificial intelligence and defence under the iCET initiative.

Defence agreement

In the talks, the two sides are also expected to review ongoing defence cooperation including an ambitious plan between US defence giant GE Aerospace and India’s Hindustan Aeronautics (HAL) to produce the advanced F414 jet engines for the Indian Air Force (IAF). In August last year, the US Congress approved the agreement between GE Aerospace and HAL to produce the jet engines.

During Sullivan’s visit, the two sides are also expected to deliberate on the ambitious India-Middle East-Europe Economic Corridor (IMEC).

There has been a delay in the implementation of the mega project in view of the current situation in West Asia. Billed as a pathbreaking initiative, the IMEC envisages a vast road, railroad and shipping network among Saudi Arabia, India, the United States and Europe with an aim to ensure integration among Asia, the Middle East and the West. The IMEC also envisages an electricity cable network, a hydrogen pipeline, a high-speed data cable network to facilitate overall economic growth in the partner countries.

The India-Middle East-Europe Economic Corridor is also seen as an initiative by like-minded nations to gain strategic influence in the face of China’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) which has faced increasing criticism over lack of transparency and disregard for sovereignty of the nations. The BRI is a mega connectivity project that connects China with Southeast Asia, Central Asia, Russia and Europe. The IMEC initiative was firmed up on the sidelines of the G20 Summit in Delhi in September last year. An agreement was signed by India, Saudi Arabia, the European Union, the United Arab Emirates (UAE), the US and some other G20 partners for the corridor. 

(With inputs from agency)

Also Read: Top official from Biden administration to visit New Delhi to engage with Modi 3.0 government

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