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In a day-long visit today, French Minister to discuss ways to strengthen Indo-French ties

The French embassy mentioned in a statement that Parly, Minister for the Armed Forces of France, will be on an official visit to India

French Defence Minister Florence Parly will visit India for a day on Friday and meet Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh and other officials to discuss a wide-range of issues.

The French embassy mentioned in a statement on Thursday that Parly, Minister for the Armed Forces of France, will be on an official visit to India “to strengthen Indo-French strategic and defence ties”.

She will “stress France and India’s joint commitment to answering the challenges of the Indo-Pacific by bringing together friendly powers to defend the rule of law, offering a positive agenda to the countries of the region, and rejecting all forms of hegemony.”

The French minister will also call on Modi, and hold the Annual Defence Dialogue with Singh, the statement added.

“These in-depth talks will cover all aspects of the Indo-French defence cooperation, including operational defence, particularly maritime security in the Indo-Pacific; industrial and technological partnership in line with Make in India; and counter-terrorism cooperation.”

Parly will also meet National Security Adviser Ajit Doval “in particular for discussions on regional security issues”.

Her visit, the embassy said, “highlights France’s engagement in the Indo-Pacific and the centrality of India in the French strategy”.

She will detail recently unveiled EU Strategy for Cooperation in the Indo-Pacific “that brings a multiplier effect to this comprehensive approach for the region”. France, which will take up the presidency of the Council of the EU on January 1, “will make the Indo-Pacific and India a key priority,” the embassy said.

Parly had last visited India on September 10, 2020, for the induction ceremony of the first five of the 36 Rafale fighter jets bought by the country in 2016.

The embassy said, till now, 33 Rafale jets have been delivered to India, “all perfectly on schedule despite disruptions due to the pandemic”.

Source: Indian Express

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