January 15, 2017 2:13:38 pm
The Obama Administration has asserted that the Indo-US “strategic convergence” is at its highest point, as it hoped that the incoming Trump government would continue to prioritise the bilateral partnership of “paramount importance” to address global challenges. “I want to say, particularly (as) I sit in this position in the Department of State, the strategic convergence between the United States and India is at the highest point that it has ever been,” Assistant Secretary of State for South and Central Asia Nisha Desai Biswal told media in an interview.
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“We see that by large we share a world view and we are now increasingly therefore talking to each other about challenges that we see as well as opportunities,” she said. As a political appointee, Biswal’s term at the State Department ends on January 20 along with that of Barack Obama as US President when Donald Trump would succeed him as the 45th President of the US.
“The US-India relationship is built on a number of fundamentals that I think are consistent. We have a set of values, for democracy, for a pluralistic society, for a free society,” Biswal said.
“We have a number of shared goals, objectives and inheritance to a rule-based international order, a desire to advance through peace and a focus on a shared prosperity,” she said. Biswal said she believes that these fundamentals would continue to define the Indo-US relationship. “The next administration coming in, comes in with an understanding and appreciation for the important role that India has played and the increasingly consequential role that India will play on the global scene. And that a US India partnership therefore is of paramount importance to those countries in advancing those shared goals and interests,” she asserted.
“We have certainly seen that in how President Obama has approached this relationship. It’s a relationship that Barack Obama came in on day one focused on and in seeking out to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to be his first guest at the White House for a state visit, in calling Prime Minister (Narendra) Modi immediately after the election results were announced and issuing him immediately an invitation to the White House and a desire to partner,” Biswal said.
This is because, for Obama, he has seen the important role that India has played and will play moving into the future, she noted. “The world’s oldest and largest democracies that have so much in common should make common cause in advancing both our own goals and for US and for India and for also how we work together to address global challenges,” Biswal said.
“We saw that in Paris Agreement, the role that India played, we are seeing that increasingly in how India is becoming a net security provider, a provider of humanitarian relief, how India is becoming a moral, security and strategic economic force for not only India, not only South Asia, but really at a global level,” Biswal said.
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