Strategic talks, Afghanistan on Hillary`s India agenda

Last Updated: Thursday, May 3, 2012 - 12:23

Washington: Besides preparing for the next month`s Indo-US Strategic Dialogue here, US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton will discuss a range of bilateral issues and Afghanistan with Indian leadership when she arrives in New Delhi next week.

While the specifics of Clinton`s trip to India ? with stops in Kolkata and New Delhi ? are still being given a final shape, a senior Obama administration official involved in the planning said the Secretary wanted to visit India ahead of the next month`s crucial meeting here, as she had not visited the country after the last year`s Strategic Dialogue in New Delhi.

"Secretary had not been to India since her trip there after last year`s Strategic Dialogue and I think, she wanted to do so," the official told reporters ahead of the Clinton`s visit to Bangladesh and India from May 5 to 8.
After her visit to Kolkata, Clinton would travel to New Delhi for her meetings with External Affairs Minister S M Krishna, National Security Advisor Shivshankar Menon, and possibly with Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.

"In Delhi, it would be a good opportunity to review the progress in our relations since her visit in June 2011 and again to look ahead to the Strategic Dialogue that we would be hosting in June in Washington," the official said.

The State Department would have more to announce about the specifics in the days to come, he noted.
"In terms of our bilateral relations, I would say, we continue to make progress. We are breaking new ground in areas like clean energy and health, security and science and technology. Our trade continues to expand very rapidly and is expected to exceed USD 100 billion this year," he said, adding the government to government dialogue has never been stronger.

PTI



First Published: Thursday, May 3, 2012 - 12:22

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