India-US-Japan ties crucial to reining in a stubborn China: scholars

06 Mar 2017


India must continue its active cooperation with Japan and the US in order to counter China's increasing assertiveness in the Indian Ocean and the Pacific Ocean regions, say defence experts.

At a day-long conference in Washington on Friday, a group of Indian and American scholars have opined that cooperation among India, the United States and Japan is necessary to face the Chinese assertiveness in the strategic Indian Ocean and Pacific regions.

They were of the opinion that cooperation between India, US and Japan, ''will determine the parameters of security'' in the Indian Ocean and Pacific regions in the face of an assertive China.

China has taken an increasingly hard-line stance in its territorial disputes in the East China Sea, the South China Sea and over Taiwan, which Beijing claims as its own.

The matter came up during a conference on the future of US-India relations under the Trump administration, organised by the Hudson Institute and the New Delhi-based Vivekananda International Foundation (VIF) – two conservative think-tanks having close ties with the Trump administration and the Modi government, respectively.

The discussion, closed for the media, focused on India-US strategic ties in both the security and economic realms.

In the security arena, participants discussed ways to boost cooperation in the Indo-Pacific region, including East Asia, South Asia and the Middle East. In the economic field, the deliberation focused on potential policies from both sides to boost trade and cooperation, a media release said.

The conference was inaugurated by Kenneth Weinstein, president and CEO of the Hudson Institute, and former Indian Army chief Gen (retd) NC Vij, director of the Vivekananda International Foundation (CIF).

In addition to Gen Vij, the VIF delegation comprised former foreign secretary and dean of the Centre for International Relations and Diplomacy, at the VIF, former Deputy Chief of the Army Staff Lt Gen (retd) Ravi Sawhney, Lt Gen (retd) Davinder Kumar and Harinder Sekhon.

Hudson scholars included Michael Pillsbury, Husain Haqqani, Eric Brown, Douglas Feith and Aparna Pande.

The report comes amidst widening differences between India and the US in trade policies and increasing racial attacks on Indians in the US in recent times.

Indian Ambassador to US Navtej Sarna has conveyed his deep concerns to US government over the attacks.

While the US State Department, on behalf of US Govt, expressed condolences and assured they are working on a solution, nothing concrete has been done to stem the surge in racial offences.

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