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Indo-US Ties Go Beyond Trade: Senior US Official | India News

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BENGALURU: Don Heflin, Charge d’Affaires of the US, said on Tuesday that the Indo-US defense association. He goes beyond trade and said the country was committed to new ties to achieve common interests and goals of a free and open Indo-Pacific (FOIP). .
Responding to a specific question about India’s Atmanirbhar Bharat campaign striving to indigenize and reduce reliance on foreign products and technology as a strategy, Heflin said: “We recognize India’s ambitions for a vibrant and indigenous defense industry. The Indo-American relationship goes beyond defense manufacturing and trade, we have signed several key defense agreements and have regular engagements and exercises. ”
On India’s acquisition of S-400 missile systems from Russia, and the US threat to invoke its Countering America’s Adversaries through Sanctions Act (CAATSA) in the Indian Air Force (IAF), he said : “We are aware of reports on plans to purchase missiles, including S-400 systems. Some people ask if there is a blanket exemption for countries, which is not the case. It is case by case. We have not made any exemption determinations with respect to India’s transactions with Russia. ”
He spoke at the United States Embassy conference on Aero India and reiterated that the country’s participation in the fair was an example of the deepening of defense and strategic partnership with India and that it reflects the growing and close bilateral ties of advocacy and shared vision of a free and open Indo-Pacific region.
Heflin, who will lead a high-level delegation of US government officials and defense industry representatives at Aero India, said: “Our participation will show our strong support for American companies. It also demonstrates the depth and breadth of the US-India partnership, which we want to promote. ”
As TOI previously reported, the US 28th Bomb Wing B-1B Lancer heavy bomber based at Ellsworth Air Force Base in South Dakota will conduct a ‘flyby’ for the first time. Calling India a reliable defense partner, Heflin said the United States was offering advanced military technologies in addition to working on greater cooperation through official visits, exchanges, joint exercises, etc.
The integration of advanced US defense systems, enhanced interoperability between the US and Indian armies are among the highlights of defense ties, he said, adding that several US companies have been. The US is also working closely with India and a growing number of joint ventures continue to strengthen the network. of defense partners in India. “These companies also create jobs,” he said.
Kelli L Seybolt, Air Force Assistant Under Secretary for International Affairs, said: “Our presence underscores the strategic importance and value we place on the growing relationship that is based on the common interest and vision of FOIP.”

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