Rex Tillerson will arrive in New Delhi today: US secretary of state to meet Narendra Modi, Sushma Swaraj on Wednesday

US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, ahead of his arrival in New Delhi on Tuesday, said America's relationship with India is of strategic importance which is not limited just to South Asia.

Tillerson will meet Prime Minister Narendra Modi and External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj on Wednesday, according to media reports.

Tillerson, who paid a surprise visit to Afghanistan on Monday, said the Trump administration was of the view that India can play a positive role in creating a peaceful and stable Afghanistan.

Rex Tillerson will arrive in New Delhi today: US secretary of state to meet Narendra Modi, Sushma Swaraj on Wednesday

File image of US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson. AP

"They already are providing important economic activity and creating jobs, which is important for the future of Afghanistan. And we want to encourage that as well. We think they can be a very positive influence on creating the right environment for the future in Afghanistan," he said.

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

He was responding to a question on his major India policy speech last week in which he sought broader goals for India-US relationship.

In addition to Afghanistan, Trump is scheduled to travel to Pakistan and India during his current trip to South Asia.

He said during his visit to Pakistan he would discuss with the Pakistani officials the role of India in Afghanistan.

"That’s certainly something we’ll be talking about during the visit on Tuesday," he said.

With inputs from PTI

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Updated Date: Oct 24, 2017 09:24:55 IST

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