India to get access to real-time encrypted information from US — COMCASA

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U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Defense Secretary James Mattis held long-delayed talks Thursday with top Indian officials, looking to shore up the alliance with one of Washington's top regional partners.

But with trade and strategic ties growing quickly between the US and India, both countries have been eager to downplay potential diplomatic troubles.

Under the agreement, the U.S. will also "transfer high-tech communications platforms to India", NYT reported.

"We have been discussing how we can more openly communicate back and forth because of the sensitivity of some of the technology. we have to know that when we share this with another like-minded nation, that we can keep it secure", Mattis said. They're going to buy more energy products from the United States.

Ahead of the talks in New Delhi, a senior U.S. State Department official said the United States was engaged in "very detailed conversations" with India over Washington's request to completely stop India's oil imports from Iran.

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.

Mattis said the two sides also agreed to "increase and expand our engagement in the maritime domain" with a new joint exercise on India's coast in 2019, and a hotline between the two countries.

"The kickoff of the 2+2 was pretty special, a historic level of relationship that the two countries have not previously had", Pompeo said, speaking at a press breifing.

"Our effort here is not to penalise great strategic partners like India, a major defence partner".

Defense cooperation, in particular, has emerged as the "most significant dimension" of the U.S. -India relationship, said Indian Defense Minister Nirmala Sitharaman.

"While he is delicately balancing relations in his geographic neighbourhood with recent tensions with China in Doklam and arms sales with Russia, Modi sees a bright future with the United States", he said in the op-ed.

Swaraj said India attaches the "highest priority" to its strategic partnership with the U.S., and sees America as a "partner of choice". Data acquired through such systems can not be disclosed or transferred to any person or entity without India's consent. Delhi is buoyed by the fact that US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo read the diplomatic version of the riot act to Pakistan en route to Delhi.

India is also in talks with Russian Federation to buy five advanced S-400 long-range, surface-to-air missile systems, a possible deal that could face rough weather under new United States sanctions.

Raja Mohan downplayed reports in the US and Indian media that Trump has mimicked Modi's accent in meetings with his top officials.

The day began on Thursday with separate bilateral meetings between the defence and foreign policy heads of India and the USA at the respective ministries in Delhi. "They are meant to be a - have an impact on the sanctioned country, which is Russian Federation", the secretary of state said.

"This government is pragmatic", Mohan said.

Pompeo arrived in India after a short trip in Pakistan, where he met Prime Minister Imran Khan and Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi.

Also read: U.S. denies Pakistan aid - Pressure to tackle militancy or hitting at a vulnerable economy?

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