• Attending ADMM-Plus in Bangkok
  • Both Ministers discuss regional security and ways to expand defence cooperation
The Union Minister for Defence Rajnath Singh exchanging a memento with the US Secretary of Defence, Dr. Mark T. Esper after their meeting, on the sidelines of ADMM-Plus, in Bangkok on November 17, 2019.

Bangkok. 17 November 2019. Rajnath Singh held a bilateral meeting with US Secretary of Defence Dr Mark T Esper on the sidelines of ASEAN Defence Ministers’ Meeting-Plus (ADMM-Plus) in Bangkok today.

Expressing happiness on the growing relationship between India and US, Rajnath Singh said, the bilateral cooperation between the two sides has grown across a wide range of sectors including defence and security, economy, energy, counter-terrorism and people-to-people ties.

The Indian & US delegations meeting on the sidelines of ADMM-Plus, in Bangkok

He added that there is growing convergence between India and US in the Indo-Pacific region and India’s vision for Indo-Pacific is for a free & open, peaceful, prosperous and inclusive region supported by a rules-based order and respect for sovereignty and territorial integrity.

Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) is central to India’s vision of Indo-Pacific. Both countries are working together in the area of Maritime security including elements such as joint exercises, Humanitarian Assistance and Disaster Relief (HADR) operations and Maritime Domain Awareness.

A warm shake hand between the two defence ministers

The two Ministers also discussed a number of other issues concerning regional security and bilateral defence cooperation. The meeting ended on a positive note and the ministers looked forward to have substantial discussions during the forthcoming 2+2 dialogue in Washington DC later next month.

Later, in a tweet, Rajnath Singh described his meeting with US Secretary of Defence as excellent. “We talked about ways to expand defence cooperation between India and the United States,” he tweeted.