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Rex Tillerson to meet Narendra Modi, Sushma Swaraj and Ajit Doval today; security, terrorism likely to top agenda

Rex Tillerson, Secretary of State, US Department of State, will be visiting India on Wednesday. According to the US State Department, he will meet with senior Indian leaders to discuss further strengthening of India-US strategic partnership and collaboration on security in the Indo-Pacific region.

His visit will also advance the agenda laid out by President Donald Trump and Prime Minister Narendra Modi during Modi’s visit to the White House in June.

Tillerson's first meeting is with National Security Advisor Ajit Doval in New Delhi at 10 am after which he will pay tribute at Gandhi Smriti Museum. At 11.30 am, Tillerson is scheduled to meet Minister of External Affairs Sushma Swaraj with whom he will have a working luncheon. Both leaders will then participate in a joint press conference in the national capital.

At 1.30 pm, the US secretary of state will meet business executives and then will proceed to meet the staff and families of the US Embassy in New Delhi.

Tillerson will round up his visit with a 4.30 pm meeting with Modi.

US secretary of state Rex Tillerson arrives in India. PTI

US secretary of state Rex Tillerson arrives in India. PTI

Ahead of his meeting, Tillerson had said that America's relationship with India is of strategic importance which is not limited to South Asia. He further added that the Trump administration was of the view that India can play a positive role in creating a peaceful and stable Afghanistan.

"I think, our view of the relationship with India is one that's of strategic importance not just for this specific region, but also about a free and open Indo-Pacific region stretching all the way from Japan to India," Tillerson had told reporters at the Bagram Air Force Base in Afghanistan on his arrival for his maiden visit to South Asia.

Tillerson had asked Pakistan it to rein in terrorism

On Tuesday, Tillerson had bluntly told Pakistan's top leadership that it must increase efforts to eradicate terrorists operating within the country.

Tillerson had arrived in Islamabad on a whirlwind visit to reset bilateral ties strained after President Donald Trump accused Pakistan of providing safe havens to terrorist groups.

During his meeting with Pakistan prime minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi, Tillerson had discussed the bilateral cooperation and partnership, expanding economic ties between the US and Pakistan, and Pakistan’s critical role in the region.

The US embassy had said that the US secretary of state reiterated Trump's message that "Pakistan must increase its efforts to eradicate militants and terrorists operating within the country."

He had also outlined the United States’ new South Asia Strategy and the vital role that Pakistan can play in working with the United States and others to facilitate a peace process in Afghanistan that can bring stability and security to the region, the US embassy statement said.

With inputs from PTI

 


Updated Date: Oct 25, 2017 08:46 AM

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