Pompeo, Mattis set for meetings with top Indian officials

Pompeo, Mattis set for meetings with top Indian officials

Pompeo said the United States values its relationship with India, and noted, "We fully support India's rise".

"India's leadership in the world supports our shared democratic values regionally and globally".

The impulse to strengthen ties with India also perhaps explains why the U.S. downplayed its concerns over New Delhi trading with Moscow and Tehran. "With India as a major defence partner, we are elevating our defence relationship to be on a par with our closest allies as we deepen the broader US-India relationship, enhancing our interoperability, our defence trade, our technology innovation and industrial collaboration, and bolstering our people-to-people bonds", Mattis said while speaking to the media after the India-US 2+2 Dialogue.

Seperately, Dunford said, "India is one of our premier security partners and an important and influential global leader".

India is the world's third-biggest oil importer and Iran's second after China.

The format was first agreed to previous year, during a visit to the US by Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi for a meeting with US President Donald Trump.

"The US and India already have that foundation in our commitment to a safe, secure, prosperous, and free Indo-Pacific region, where sovereignty of all nations is respected, worldwide norms are upheld, disputes are resolved peacefully, and nations freely transit global waters and airspace, and further to borrow Prime Minister Modi's words again, nations are free from impossible debt burdens imposed by others", he said. "In the 10th anniversary of the 26/11 attacks, we recognized the importance of justice and retribution for the masterminds behind this terrorist attack", the statement read.

"The ban has been lifted and we are now dipping our toes in the USA oil market but, the political risks involved remain high", said one Chinese oil trader who spoke to AMI on condition anonymity", when a tanker leaves the Gulf coast it can take 50 days to reach China.

Addressing a joint press conference, Swaraj expressed satisfaction over the agenda of the inaugural dialogue while giving the details of the deliberations.

A Pentagon official last month threatened to impose sanctions on India if it goes ahead with its $6 billion purchase of the Russian S-400 missile defense system.

The United States and Indian militaries will carry out large-scale joint exercises off India next year, top officials said Thursday.

The Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) is an elite club of countries that deals with the trade in nuclear technology and fissile materials. Washington has been nudging New Delhi to step back from defence purchases.

"We talked about their new government, the opportunity to reset the relationship between our two countries across a broad spectrum - economic and business and commercial", Pompeo explained, adding that Washington desired improved ties in all aspects.

"Today also marks another milestone for our relationship".

The presence of USA troops in Afghanistan has heightened USA sensitivity to the rivalry between nuclear-armed India and Pakistan. The sources said text of the agreement is nearly ready.

India however is highly reliant on Iranian crude imports.