By James Griffiths, CNN
Updated 0946 GMT (1746 HKT) October 27, 2020US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo (right) is greeted by US Ambassador to India Kenneth Juster upon his arrival at an airport in New Delhi on October 26, 2020.
Hong Kong (CNN)The United States and India have reaffirmed their defensive and security relationship, as Washington continues to rally allies in Asia amid concerns over increased Chinese military activity in the region.During a press conference Tuesday in the Indian capital, US Secretary of Defense Mark Esper and his Indian counterpart Rajnath Singh announced the signing of the Basic Exchange and Cooperation Agreement (BECA), enabling greater information-sharing and further defense cooperation between the two countries.”The defense ties between our two nations remains a key pillar of our overall bilateral relationship,” said Esper. “Based on our shared values and common interests, we stand shoulder to shoulder in support of a free and open Indo-Pacific for all, particularly in light of increasing aggression and destabilizing activities by China.”The agreement, said Singh furthered the two sides ongoing commitment to the “law and freedom of navigation in the international seas” while “upholding the territorial integrity and sovereignty of all states.”Both India and the US are due to participate in the upcoming Malabar naval exercises which will be held in the Indian Ocean next month. The drills will feature all members of the so-called Quad, an informal alliance of the US, India, Japan and Australia, which has been proposed by some as a potential “Asian NATO,” intended to counterbalance Chinese military strength in the region. Tiếp tục đọc “India signs defensive agreement with US following Himalayan standoff with China”