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T V Parasuram in Washington
The US will provide India with special forces equipment, including unmanned aerial vehicles and ground sensors, enabling inter-operability between the special forces of the two countries, Defence Secretary Yogendra Narain said on Friday.
After the end of three-day of talks with his US counterpart, Under Secretary of Defence Douglas Feithunes of the Indo-US Defence Policy Group, Narain told reporters that the US will give India night-vision equipment, thermal imaging, and personal protection equipment.
The US has also agreed to consider the Indian request to extend joint naval patrols from the Strait of Malacca to the Strait of Hormuz.
A joint statement by the DPG on the meeting said the US and India have charted a new course in bilateral relations which entails rapid growth in cooperation on defence and security matters.
During the meet, the two delegations approved a range of activities proposed by DPG subgroups, including specialised training programmes and joint exercises to be carried out by armed services of the two countries during the next year and developing a defence supply relationship, including a government-to-government foreign military sales programme.
Highlighting the importance of the ongoing Special Operations Airborne Exercise in building inter-operability, the DPG agreed to conduct more such exercises.
The two delegations agreed on the need to work closely for speedier approvals of export licences in the US and resumption of technical cooperation in defence research, development and production.
During the meeting, the two sides also reaffirmed their commitment to work together to prevent proliferation of weapons of mass destruction and their delivery systems and agreed to hold further consultations in the coming weeks on the threat such proliferation poses to their common security interests.
Reaffirming the contribution that missile defences can make to enhance cooperative security and stability, the DPG decided to hold a future missile defence workshop in New Delhi and agreed on the value of pursuing a missile defence requirements analysis for India.
The Indian delegation accepted invitations to the June, 2002 missile defence conference in Dallas, Texas, and the June, 2003 Roving Sands missile defence exercise.
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