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US Deputy Secy of State embarks on a visit to India and Pakistan

Nirendra Dev

Nirendra DevOct 06, 2021, 10:00 AM IST

US Deputy Secy of State embarks on a visit to India and Pakistan

New Delhi: In a major diplomatic engagement, Wendy Sherman, Deputy Secretary of State of the United States is on a three-day visit to India commencing Tuesday, Oct 5.

She will be in India till October 7 when the key US official will be flying to Islamabad.

On 6 October, Wednesday, Deputy Secretary of State Sherman will meet Indian Foreign Secretary Harsh Vardhan Shringla.

Both the diplomats would review the India-U.S. bilateral agenda and outcomes of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s recent visit to the US.

"They (Sherman and Shringla) will exchange views on regional issues pertaining to South Asia and the Indo-Pacific region and contemporary global issues," an MEA statement said.

The Deputy Secretary of State and Foreign Secretary Shringla will also participate in a special session of the India-Ideas Summit organised by the US India Business Council.

Ms Sherman will call on External Affairs Minister Dr S Jaishankar and also National Security Advisor Ajit Doval.

The Deputy Secretary's visit to India is seen as an useful opportunity to continue the regular dialogue and further strengthen the India-US Comprehensive Global Strategic Partnership.

Sherman has also lately visited Switzerland and Uzbekistan. 

India and the US are scheduled to hold their first 2+2 summit under the Joe Biden administration in November.During PM Modi's visit to the US for UN General Assembly, both sides had a crucial round of bilateral engagement. President Biden had also hosted the first in person Summit of Quad - that comprises India, Japan
and Australia besides the US.

The American Embassy in New Delhi welcomed Ms Sherman to India with a Twitter missive.

"During her visit, she will participate in a series of bilateral meetings, civil society events, and the India Ideas Summit," the missive said.

On October 7, the visiting dignitary is expected to travel to Mumbai and then fly to Pakistan "to meet with senior officials".

In the meantime, Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan is still awaiting a courtesy tele-talks with President Biden. Both the leaders have not yet had any such conversation since Biden took over earlier this year.

There has to be some concerted effort by Pakistani officials in meetings with Ms Sherman to dispel the global notion that authorities in Islamabad have always played double games when it comes to the issue of global war against terror.

Antony Blinken, US Secretary of State, had made a two-day visit to India in July. Blinken - of course- met Pakistani foreign minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi last month. 

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