AK Antony to hold defence talks with Singapore, Australia, Thailand

On the heels of Prime mInister Manmohan Singh's visit to Japan, Thailand and Vietnam, defence minster Mr. AK Antony will now undertake a three-nation official visit to Singapore, Australia, and Thailand from 3 June to 6 June, 2013.

In Singapore, Antony will meet his counterpart Dr Ng Eng Hen, who had visited India in November last year. The two defence ministers are expected to discuss various bilateral co-operation issues as well as issues concerning the regional global security situations.

Antony's visit to Australia will be the first ever visit by an Indian defence minister. He will stop over at Perth enroute to Canberra. At Perth he will be received by Australian defence minister Stephen Smith where both ministers will attend a few ceremonial events before proceeding to Canberra  where he will hold detailed bilateral discussions with Smith.

Antony is also expected to call on Prime Minister, Julia Gillard, annd the two are likely to discuss measures to enhance exchanges between the defence establishments and armed forces of the two countries.

Antony's visit to Thailand is in response to an invitation from the Thai defence minister Air Chief Marshal Sukumpol Suwanatat who had visited India in December, 2012 and  follows the visit of the Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh to the country.

During his visit, Antony will call on Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra and review the on-going exchanges between the armed forces including possible enhancement of on-going army and navy exercises and joint patrols along the common maritime boundary between both countries.