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India and France on Thursday discussed ways to enhance military cooperation as their Defence Ministers met here against the backdrop of moves to finalise a mega fighter deal for which French company Dassault has been shortlisted.
New Delhi: India and France on Thursday
discussed ways to enhance military cooperation as their
Defence Ministers met here against the backdrop of moves to
finalise a mega fighter deal for which French company Dassault
has been shortlisted.
The 45 minute-long meeting between Defence Minister A
K Antony and his French counterpart Gerard Longuet took place
at South Block here.
"The two Defence Ministers met for 45 minutes and
discuss several issues. The French Defence Minister also met
Army Chief General V K Singh and Navy Chief Admiral Nirmal
Verma," Defence Ministry officials said.
The meeting assumes significance in the wake of India
selecting French defence company Dassault and European
Consortium`s EADS Cassidian for the final round of USD 10.4
billion deal for Medium-Range Multi Role Combat Aircraft
While Dassault has pitched in with Rafale fighter
jets, EADS is offering India its latest fighter aircraft
India is also expected to approve the up-gradation of
around 50 Mirage-2000 supersonic fighter jets which is
presently considered as backbone of the Indian Air Force`s
Procured from France, the up-gradation would cost
around USD 2.4 billion and is considered as one of the most
significant defence deals between India and France.
Antony also met Secretary of United States` Homeland
Security Janet Napolitano for 45 minutes.
The Defence Minister would also meet the German
Defence Minister on May 31 and his Afghan counterpart on June