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Rajnath, Jaishankar to visit Japan for 2+2 dialogue

by | Sep 6, 2022 | Asia, India

The visit comes at a time when tensions are rising in the region over China’s muscle-flexing

India’s defence minister Rajnath Singh and external affairs minister S Jaishankar are heading to Tokyo for the second edition of the two-plus-two (2+2) talks between the two countries that begins September 7.
The talks have been devised as a mechanism to strengthen the bilateral strategic relationship between India and Japan amid rising tensions with China across Asia.
During the visit, Singh and Jaishankar will hold the defence ministerial meeting and foreign ministers’ strategic dialogue with their counterparts Yasukazu Hamada and Yoshimasa Hayashi, respectively, the ministry of external affairs said.
India and Japan’s special strategic and global partnership was based on shared values of democracy, freedom and respect for rule of law, officials said. The two sides will look to explore new initiatives to strengthen the partnership.
India and Japan, who are also part of the four-nation Quad grouping along with Australia and the US, are expected to review the entire spectrum of defence and strategic ties during the 2+2 dialogue.
Singh is in Mongolia on the first-ever visit to that country by an Indian defence minister, which is expected to give a push to a strategic partnership with the East Asian country. Singh will join Jaishankar in Japan on September 8 and 9.
The 2+2 dialogue comes five months after Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida visited India for the annual India-Japan summit.
At the summit in New Delhi, Kishida announced an investment of five trillion yen (Rs 3.2 lakh crore) in India spread over five years.
The two sides are likely to take up Sri Lanka’s economic situation, China’s rising belligerence against Taiwan, and maritime security while taking stock of the developments in the Indo-Pacific region.
The first India-Japan 2+2 dialogue was held in 2019. India also has a similar arrangement with the US, Australia and Russia.
The visit, which ends September 10, comes days ahead of Prime Minister Narendra Modi visiting Japan for the state funeral of former prime minister Shinzo Abe on September 27.
Abe was shot dead on July 8 during an election rally in Nara. Modi, who shared a warm relationship with Abe, wrote in a blog, “In the passing away of Abe, Japan and the world have lost a great visionary. And, I have lost a dear friend.”

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