Washington: President Barack Obama will attend a reception to be hosted by Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in honour of her Indian counterpart SM Krishna on Thursday, reflecting the importance he personally attaches to the Indo-US ties.
This is going to be one of the rarest occasions when the President of the US will drive down from the White House to the Foggy Bottom headquarters of the State Department to attend a reception hosted by the Secretary of State for a visiting Foreign Minister.
Krishna will be visiting here for the first Indo-US Strategic Dialogue on June 3.
"On Thursday, the President will attend and deliver remarks at the Secretary of State`s reception in honour of the Indian delegation to the United States-India Strategic
Dialogue, which will meet at the State Department earlier that day," the White House said as it released the schedule of the US President for the next week.
"The President`s strong support of the Strategic Dialogue and of this inaugural meeting reflects his commitment to furthering a strategic partnership with India as we seek to
address global challenges," the White House said.
Earlier, Assistant Secretary of State for South and Central Asia, Robert Blake, told reporters at a news conference that Obama has called India an indispensable
partner and one of the defining partners for the United States in the 21st century.
"Obama Administration attaches great importance to our
relations with India, and as President Obama himself has said,
this will be one of our signature partnerships in the 21st
century," Blake said.
"That was shown by the President`s decision to invite
Prime Minister (Manmohan) Singh (as the first State Guest of
his presidency in November last year). It`s shown by the huge
number of dialogues that we have. It`s shown even more by the
huge private sector component to our relations and all of the
people-to-people contacts that we have.
"If anything, in our case, it`s the governments who are
catching up to the people in terms of all of the many, many
ties that exist at so many levels of our two countries," Blake