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3:24 pm - Monday April 22, 3005

India, Australia focus on Indo-pacific at their 1st 2+2 dialogue

Agencies, New Delhi

India and Australia today took stock of their strategic and defence ties at their first 2+2 Foreign Secretaries and Defence Secretaries dialogue.

‘’Both sides agreed that a free, open, prosperous and inclusive Indo-Pacific region serves the long-term interests of all countries in the region and of the world at large,’’ the Ministry of External Affairs said here in a statement after the meeting.

The 2+2 dialogue comes close on the heels of the first India, Japan, US, Australia quadrilateral held at Manila on the sidelines of the ASEAN meeting in Australia. All aspects of bilateral relations with a focus on strategic and defence relations between the two countries were reviewed, the MEA said.

The Indian side was led by Foreign Secretary Dr. S. Jaishankar and Defence Secretary Sanjay Mitra, and the Australian side was led by , Secretary of Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade Frances Adamson, and Secretary of Department of Defence Greg Moriarty.

‘’India and Australia share warm bilateral relations based on shared democratic values and pluralism. There is a growing convergence of strategic perspectives between the two countries.,’’ the MEA said. During the visit, the Australian Foreign Secretary is also meeting Secretary (East) and Secretary (ER) in Ministry of External Affairs.

Defence Secretary Greg Moriarty also met Chief of Staff Committee and Chief of Naval Staff Admiral Sunil Lanba and visited Rajputana Rifles Regimental Centre in New Delhi.

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