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NEW DELHI: US Secretary of Defense Lloyd J Austin III on Saturday attended the wreath-laying ceremony at the National War Memorial in the nation’s capital. After the ceremony, Austin will be meeting with his Indian counterpart Defence Minister Rajnath Singh.

National Security Advisor Ajit Doval and US Secretary of Defence Lloyd James Austin III on Friday discussed areas of mutual interest, strategic partnership and cooperation on various aspects of security and defence.

“Great meeting with NSA Doval last night. The breadth of collaboration b/w our 2 nations reflects significance of our major defence partnership as we work together to address the most pressing challenges facing Indo-Pacific region,” Austin wrote in a tweet on Saturday adding that he was “looking forward to great meetings today.”

Austin, who arrived in Delhi earlier on Friday, is on a three-day official visit to the country. It is the first visit to India by a top official of the Biden administration.

Earlier, Austin met Prime Minister Narendra Modi and expressed America’s strong desire to further enhance the strategic partnership between the two countries for peace, stability and prosperity in the Indo-Pacific region and beyond.

PM Modi outlined his vision for the strategic partnership between the two countries and emphasized the important role of bilateral defence cooperation in India-US ties. (ANI)