India, US Reaffirm Commitment To Free, Open Indo-Pacific

India and the United States have reaffirmed their commitment to a free and open Indo-Pacific following the fourth India-US 2+2 Ministerial Dialogue held in Washington.

India and the US held the 2+2 ministerial meeting in Washington with the Indian side led by Defence Minister Rajnath Singh and External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar and the American side led by Secretary of State Anthony Blinken and Defence Secretary Lloyd Austin on Monday.
In a joint statement on the fourth India-US 2+2 Ministerial Dialogue, the ministers recalled the inaugural virtual Quad Leaders’ Summit in March 2021, the in-person Quad Leaders’ Summit in September 2021 in Washington, and the February 2022 Quad Foreign Ministers’ meeting in Melbourne.

Both sides stated that they are “looking forward to the next Quad Leaders’ Summit in Tokyo in 2022”.

“The Ministers reaffirmed their commitment to a free and open Indo-Pacific in which the sovereignty and territorial integrity of all states are respected, and countries are free from military, economic, and political coercion,” underlined the joint statement.

They further reaffirmed their dedication to promoting regional stability and prosperity, with an inclusive regional architecture, abiding by the rule of law, the freedom of navigation and overflight, peaceful resolution of disputes, and ASEAN centrality.

The ministers also reiterated the importance of adherence to international law to meet challenges to the rules-based order, including in the South China Sea, the statement said.

The Ministers welcomed the progress made in the last year on developing a “positive and constructive agenda” for the Quad to deliver peace and prosperity to the region in pursuance of their shared vision for a free, open, and inclusive Indo-Pacific.

“The Ministers reiterated their commitment to take forward the initiatives announced by the Leaders, to empower the Quad as a force for global good for the Indo-Pacific region and welcomed ongoing discussions in the Quad Working Groups on vaccines, climate change, infrastructure, space, cyber security, and critical and emerging technologies for delivering practical and tangible benefits to the region,” the statement said.

Welcoming the remarkable progress made under the Quad Vaccine Partnership to augment the manufacturing capacity of the Biological E facility in India, supported by the US International Development Finance Corporation (DFC), the Ministers committed to expedite the delivery of the first batch of vaccines to countries of the Indo-Pacific and beyond and to diversify the basket of vaccines in the context of changes in the global demand and supply landscape, the statement added. (ANI)

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