The US Secretary of State will meet with his Indian counterparts and other officials before meeting with Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
US Secretary of State Anthony Brinken will meet with Indian counterparts and other officials on Wednesday, and then go to meet with Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, as Chinese opponents seek to deepen cooperation and resolve differences.
Brinken is visiting the country for the first time since joining the administration of US President Joe Biden and is expected to discuss the supply of COVID-19 vaccines, the security situation in Afghanistan, and India’s human rights record on Wednesday.
Speaking to a group of civil society leaders at a hotel in New Delhi, Brinken said that the relationship between the United States and India is “one of the most important in the world.”
“The Indian people and the American people believe in human dignity and equal opportunities, the rule of law, and basic freedoms including freedom of religion and belief… These are the basic tenets of a democratic country like ours,” he said.
“Of course, both of our democracies are in progress. As friends, we talk about this.”
The attendees included religious leaders such as Geshe Dorje Tandu of the Tibetan House in New Delhi, the cultural center of the Dalai Lama.
At his New Delhi conference, Brinken is expected to upgrade India’s human rights record and a recent religion-based citizenship law widely seen as discriminating against Muslims.
Before Brinken’s visit to China, India Ministry of Foreign Affairs said The country is proud of its diverse traditions and is happy to discuss this issue with the top US diplomat.
The Modi government faces accusations of suppressing dissent, pursuing a separatist policy to attract its Hindu nationalist foundation and alienating the country’s largest ethnic minority Muslim.
Brin is sure to hold talks with Indian Foreign Minister Subramaniya Mjashankar later on Wednesday.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs said: “Discussions will focus on regional and global issues of common concern, including recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic, cooperation between the Indo-Pacific region, Afghanistan and the United Nations.”
The two sides will discuss the deteriorating security situation in Afghanistan. After the U.S. withdrawal, the Taliban are rapidly expanding the territory they control.
Although the Taliban claimed to overthrow the Afghan government, US President Joe Biden announced that his government will end its mission in Afghanistan on August 31, nearly 20 years later.
Indian analysts said that in the context of China’s military posture, the ever-changing situation in the Indo-Pacific region also occupies a prominent position on the agenda.
According to Indian media reports, the New Delhi talks are expected to lay the foundation for a four-sided security dialogue summit composed of Australia, India, Japan and the United States later this year.
The group is seen as a regional fortress against Beijing’s growing self-confidence in the Indo-Pacific region.
After concluding his meeting in New Delhi, Brinken will travel to Kuwait later on Wednesday.