India, European Union hold security and defence consultations in Delhi | Latest News India - Hindustan Times
close_game
close_game

India, European Union hold security and defence consultations in Delhi

May 07, 2024 06:29 PM IST

The India-EU second security and defence consultations were held against the backdrop of China’s increasingly assertive actions across the Indo-Pacific

India and the European Union (EU) reiterated their commitment to a free and rules-based maritime order in the Indo-Pacific at their second security and defence consultations, which also focused on enhancing security cooperation.

Security cooperation between the EU and India in recent years has encompassed counter-terrorism and cyber and maritime security. (Representative Image)
Security cooperation between the EU and India in recent years has encompassed counter-terrorism and cyber and maritime security. (Representative Image)

The consultations were held in New Delhi on Monday against the backdrop of China’s increasingly assertive actions across the Indo-Pacific. The EU has taken several steps in recent years to enhance its profile in the region and to forge a stronger security partnership with India, including the posting of a defence attache to India late last year.

Now catch your favourite game on Crickit. Anytime Anywhere. Find out how

During the security and defence consultations, co-chaired by joint secretary (international cooperation) Vishvesh Negi of the defence ministry and Joanneke Balfoort, director for security and defence policy with the European External Action Service, there was agreement on deepening security and defence cooperation, according to a readout from the EU.

Both sides reiterated their commitment to a free, open, inclusive and rules-based maritime order in the Indo-Pacific, underpinned by respect for territorial integrity and sovereignty, democracy, rule of law and freedom of navigation and overflight. They also supported unimpeded lawful commerce and peaceful resolution of disputes in line with international law, especially the United Nations Convention on Law of the Sea (UNCLOS).

Both the EU and Indo-Pacific countries have a stake in each other’s prosperity and security, and the European bloc, with its Indo-Pacific strategy and Global Gateway initiative, aims to contribute to stability, security, prosperity and sustainable development in the region, the readout said.

The EU also aims to foster democracy, rule of law, human rights and international law as an “intelligent facilitator” for peace and security in non-traditional security domains, while acting in partnership “with the other actors in the region – mainly India”, the readout added.

Security cooperation between the EU and India in recent years has encompassed counter-terrorism and cyber and maritime security. The EU also believes the Indo-Pacific, and the Indian Ocean in particular, are key areas where such cooperation can be enhanced.

On Monday, the EU delegation in India also organised a seminar with the theme of “The security environment in the Indo-Pacific region and the EU’s role as security actor in partnership/cooperation with India”, ahead of the second edition of the Schuman Security and Defence Forum to be held in Brussels during May 28-29.

The seminar, attended by security and defence experts, think tank representatives, diplomats, Indian officials and EU member state representatives, provided a platform for exchange of views on regional security challenges, the maritime security environment, and policy developments linked to the EU strategy the Indo-Pacific and India’s Indo-Pacific Oceans’ Initiative.

During her address, Balfoort said, “In this interconnected world, mutually beneficial peace, security and defence partnerships are more needed than ever. We see India, a country with considerable strategic weight on the global security balance, as a key partner for the EU in the Indo-Pacific.”

EU ambassador Hervé Delphin said the global environment had become “more volatile and unstable” with war and growing security threats. “The EU is adapting to this new reality by enhancing its own security and defence but also by working together with international partners to address common security challenges to promote peace and stability,” he said.

Growing inter-connectedness between Europe and the Indo-Pacific means “cooperation with Asian partners and most notably with India has become more important than ever”, he added.

While the EU has stepped up cooperation with India in maritime security, counter-terrorism, cyber-security, non-proliferation and disarmament, Delphin listed other areas such as space, hybrid and cyber threats and the security dimensions of artificial intelligence as possible areas for cooperation.

Get World Cup ready with Crickit! From live scores to match stats, catch all the action here. Explore now!

See more

Get Current Updates on India News, Budget 2024, Weather Today along with Latest News and Top Headlines from India and around the world.

SHARE THIS ARTICLE ON
Share this article
SHARE
Story Saved
Live Score
OPEN APP
Saved Articles
Following
My Reads
Sign out
New Delhi 0C
Thursday, June 20, 2024
Start 14 Days Free Trial Subscribe Now
Follow Us On