Rajnath Singh holds second Annual Defence Dialogue with French counterpart

Defence Minister Rajnath Singh, who is currently on a visit to France, held the second India-France Ministerial level Annual Defence Dialogue with his French counterpart, the Minister for the Armed Forces Florence Parly in Paris.

“Had fruitful deliberations with the French Minister of Armed Forces, Ms Florence Parly during the Annual Defence Dialogue in Paris. We assessed and reviewed the full spectrum of our bilateral defence engagement,” Rajnath Singh said in a tweet.

During the Annual Defence Dialogue held in Paris, the two Ministers comprehensively reviewed the entire gamut of bilateral defence cooperation, which is a key pillar of India-France Strategic Partnership.

They also exchanged views on contemporary regional and international developments of mutual interest. Both sides discussed ways to further deepen defence-related official as well as operational level interactions. The two nations agreed to expand the scope and complexity of the existing regular bilateral joint exercises (SHAKTI, VARUNA and GARUDA), the release said.

Recognising that India-France partnership in the Indian Ocean Region is crucial for preserving and promoting the common strategic and security interests, the two Ministers noted the continuing implementation of actions outlined in the “Joint Strategic Vision of India-France Cooperation in the Indian Ocean Region” (March 2018). The Ministers also reaffirmed the strong intention of the two sides to further deepen bilateral cooperation on counter terrorism, it said.

Rajnath Singh yesterday attended a ceremony for the Handing over of the first of the 36 Rafale aircrafts being acquired by India from France.

The Indian delegation included Defence Secretary Dr Ajay Kumar, senior officials from the Ministry of Defence and the three Services.