India signs pact for sharing of military equipment, intelligence with US

US puts pressure on Pakistan on behest of India, says Chinese scholar

U.S. Defense Secretary James N. Mattis and U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo meet with their counterparts Indian Minister of External Affairs Sushma Swaraj and Indian Minister of Defense Nirmala Sitharaman for the 2+2 meeting at the Ministry of External Affairs in New Delhi, India, Sept. 6, 2018.

On the tenth anniversary of the Indo-US nuclear deal, India took another substantial leap into America's orbit by agreeing Thursday to have its military share communication and intelligence with the US defence forces.

On the issue of India's oil imports from Iran, the United States has told every nation that sanctions with respect to Iranian crude oil will be enforced from November 4, said Pompeo.

"This is an important agreement and will be an advantage to India in the naval area".

India and the US Thursday asked Pakistan to ensure that its territory is not used to launch terror attacks and expeditiously bring to justice the perpetrators of cross-border terror strikes, including those on Mumbai, Pathankot and Uri.

On the US Congress considering a raft of bills looking at cutting the numbers of the H-1B visas used extensively by Indian software professionals, Swaraj said she hoped the US would implement a "non-discriminatory" and "predictable" visa regime "given its high impact on innovation, competitiveness and people-to-people partnership".

"The sanctions aren't meant to adversely impact countries like India".

"Our effort here is not to penalize great strategic partners like India", he said. The U.S.is also unhappy about India's reluctance to cut trade relations with Iran. "But our mission set is to make sure that Iran doesn't engage in malign behaviour with wealth that comes from countries around the world, thus the objective of the sanctions", he said. The mechanism was agreed upon by US President Donald Trump and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi over the phone in August past year, but will only materialize after being cancelled twice for various reasons in April and July.

The US has told India and other countries to cut oil imports from Iran to "zero" by 4 November or face sanctions, making it clear that there would be no waivers to anyone.

Most of India's weapons are Russian-made, a legacy of India's Cold War relationship with the Soviet Union.

Sources said, U.S. sanctions on the import of Iranian crude oil and boosting cooperation in the Indo-Pacific region will also be the focus of the talks.

The foreign minister said the agreement would also speed up India's entry into the Nuclear Suppliers Group, an organization of nuclear supplier countries that seeks to prevent nuclear proliferation by controlling the export of materials. The two countries have for decades jostled for influence in war-torn Afghanistan.

On Thursday, the USA and India also announced a hotline between their defence chiefs, Pompeo said.

Officials said the government had negotiated an India-specific agreement and "specific additional provisions" had been incorporated in the text to safeguard security and national interests.

Economic links have blossomed since India's market reforms in the early 1990s.

"While the partnership has stalled in Washington, it is still seen as critical in New Delhi".

"They [missile system purchase from Russian Federation and oil from Iran] are part of the conversation".

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