NEW DELHI(PTI): Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar on Thursday held talks with American counterpart Ashton Carter at the Pentagon on ways to deepen bilateral long-term strategic partnership.
Earlier on his arrival at the Pentagon, Parrikar was given an enhanced honour cordon by the American military as he was welcomed by the US Defence Secretary. The meeting between the two leaders began soon thereafter.
Indian Ambassador to the US Arun K Singh and his American counterpart Richard Verma were also present on the occasion along with other senior officials from both the sides. During the meeting, the two leaders are expected to discuss ways to deepen the long-term strategic partnership between the two countries, Pentagon Press Secretary Peter Cook said.
On Wednesday, Carter hosted an informal dinner for Parrikar at the Pentagon. Soon after their meeting, the two leaders would hold a joint press conference, the first time that an Indian Defence Minister would address the Pentagon correspondents.
Thereafter, Carter and Parrikar are scheduled to travel to Norfolk in Virginia where they will fly out to the USS Eisenhower and view flight operations on the nuclear-powered aircraft carrier, Cook said.
Parrikar also became the first Indian Defence Minister to visit the headquarters of the US Pacific Command in Hawaii.
On Wednesday, Parrikar also held a meeting with the members of the American defense industry at an event organised by the US India Business Council (USIBC) during the leader’s maiden visit to the US. India is wooing American defence industry to establish their manufacturing units in India.