Defence Minister Rajnath Singh co-chaired the Annual Defence Ministerial Dialogue Meeting with his Japanese counterpart Takeshi Iwaya in Tokyo on Monday. The dialogue discussed various issues of mutual concern including ways to further strengthen the existing bilateral co-operative arrangements and adopt new initiatives towards achieving peace and security in the region.
The lndo-Pacific vision was discussed at length with an expression of India’s preference for a rules-based order along with centrality of Association of South-East Asian Nations (ASEAN) and inclusiveness and security for all. The importance of the Special Strategic and Global Partnership between India and Japan in addressing regional peace, security and stability was also highlighted. Furthermore, the two Ministers had free and frank discussion on the emerging regional security scenario, revealed the Ministry of Defence statement.
According the MoD statement Rajnath Singh also discussed abrogation of Article 370 of the Indian constitution and said talks and cross-border terrorism originating from Pakistan cannot go together. He invited participation of Japanese companies and other stakeholders at biennial DefExpo 2020 to be held in Lucknow.
Later, Singh called on Prime Minister of Japan, Shinzo Abe. During the meeting, Defence Minister praised the exceptional relationship between Shinzo Abe and Prime Minister Narendra Modi. Singh apprised the Japanese Prime Minister on the contents of the discussion at the Defence Ministerial Dialogue.
He also conveyed to the Prime Minister of Japan that Jammu & Kashmir is an integral part of India and abrogation of Article 370 benefits the people of Jammu & Kashmir and Ladakh. He also said Pakistan has no locus standi in Jammu & Kashmir.
There was a general understanding that more co-operation should be realised in Defence Equipment and Technology Co-operation. Prime Minister Abe will be meeting the Indian PM, Modi on the side lines of UNGA in New York later this month.