NEW DELHI: Defence ministers of India and Australia discussed the situation in Afghanistan, human rights situation and violations against children, women and minorities during their meeting here on Friday, sources said.
The sources said that Defence Minister Rajnath Singh and his Australian counterpart Peter Dutton noted that the international community must do everything to implement UN resolution 2593 on Afghanistan.
This resolution stops the territory of one country from being used for spreading terrorism into another country. The UNSC adopted Resolution 2593 last month after Taliban takeover of Kabul. It demanded that Afghan territory “not be used to threaten or attack any country and reiterated the importance of combating terrorism in Afghanistan”.
The resolution reaffirmed “the importance of upholding human rights, including those of women, children and minorities,” and encouraging “all parties to seek an inclusive, negotiated political settlement, with the full, equal and meaningful participation of women.”
Rajnath Singh said after a bilateral meeting with Dutton that they had “very fruitful and wide-ranging discussion” on bilateral defence cooperation as well as regional issues.
He said the partnership is based on “our shared vision of free, open, inclusive and rule-based Indo-Pacific region”.
“Both, Australia and India have tremendous stakes in peace, development and free flow of trade, rules-based order and economic growth in the region,” he said.
Rahnath Singh said both countries are keen to work jointly to realise the full potential of the India-Australia Comprehensive Strategic Partnership.
The minister said discussions focused on bilateral defence cooperation and expanding military engagements across services, enhancing defence information sharing, cooperation in emerging defence technologies and mutual logistics support.
Both sides noted with happiness that Australia joined the Malabar Exercise in 2020.
“In this context we also expressed satisfaction in the continued participation of Australia in Malabar Exercise this year,” Rajnath Singh said.
He apprised the Australian Minister about recent efforts towards “Atmanirbhar Bharat” and growing innovation ecosystem in India. The two sides discussed opportunities to work together in defence science and technology areas.
Rajnath Singh invited Australian industry to take advantage of India’s liberalised foreign direct investment policies in the defence sector.
He said India is committed to building a robust partnership with Australia for security and growth of the entire region.
The first 2+2 Ministerial Dialogue with Australia will be held on Saturday. Australian Foreign Minister Marise Payne and Defence Minister Dutton will meet with External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar and Rajnath Singh. The agenda for the dialogue includes bilateral, regional and global issues of mutual interest. (ANI)