India, Australia emphasise on shared vision of free, open inclusive Indo-Pacific

PTIUpdated: Saturday, September 11, 2021, 05:12 PM IST
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India and Australia on Saturday emphasised on their shared vision of a free, open and inclusive Indo-Pacific region, and also the importance of combating terrorism without compromise.

External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar and Defence Minister Rajath Singh held the 'two-plus-two' talks here with their Australian counterparts Marise Payne and Peter Dutton.

At a press event after the talks, Singh said the partnership between India and Australia was based on shared vision of free, open, inclusive and prosperous Indo-Pacific region.

He said that during the talks, a rules-based order was emphasised upon.

In his remarks, Jaishankar said the two sides discussed future collaboration to deal with COVID-19 pandemic.

Jaishankar also asserted on the importance of combating terrorism without any compromise.

"Today is the 20th anniversary of 9/11, it is a reminder, if one is still needed, of the importance of combating terrorism without compromise. Close as we are to its epicentre, let us appreciate the value of international cooperation to that end," he said.

Payne said Australian and India share a positive vision of free, open and secure Indo pacific.

The two sides also discussed the situation in Afghanistan at length, the leaders said.

"Last month did see the fall of Kabul and along with the ongoing fight against terrorism, the future of Afghanistan remains a central concern to both our countries," Payne said.

"Both of our countries have been victims of appalling terrorist attacks and this day September 11 will be forever remembered for those terrible events 20 years ago when terrorists struct at the heart of our friend -- the US -- and also by extension at a modern, pluralist and democratic world," she said.

Dutton hailed the bilateral defence relationship and said that it was at a historic high.

The foreign and defence ministerial talks took place amid renewed efforts by the Quad member countries to expand cooperation in the Indo-Pacific region. Besides India and Australia, the Quad comprises the US and Japan. PTI MPB ZMN

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