Assistant Secretary of State for Political-Military Affairs Puneet Talwar will travel to India with Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel, and will accompany Secretary of State John Kerry to Australia, the Solomon Islands, and Hawaii from August 7-15.
In New Delhi, Assistant Secretary Talwar will join Secretary of Defense Hagel for discussions with senior officials on security cooperation and defense trade. This visit follows the fifth U.S.-India Strategic Dialogue, co-chaired by Secretary Kerry and India’s Minister of External Affairs Sushma Swaraj. The United States and India have significantly broadened their defense cooperation, as demonstrated by our bilateral dialogues, military exercises, military personnel exchanges, and nearly $9 billion in defense trade since 2008. The Bureau of Political-Military Affairs supports the Department of Defense’s U.S.-India Defense Trade and Technology Initiative, and seeks opportunities to expand peacekeeping, counter-piracy, and security cooperation.
In Sydney, Assistant Secretary Talwar will accompany Secretary Kerry to the Australia-United States Ministerial Consultations (AUSMIN). Secretary Kerry and Defense Secretary Hagel will meet with Minister of Foreign Affairs Julie Bishop and Minister for Defence David Johnston to advance our longstanding security cooperation and discuss regional and global issues. The Bureau of Political-Military Affairs led negotiations for the United States on the U.S.-Australia Force Posture Agreement, which directly supports to the U.S. rebalance to the Asia-Pacific.
Assistant Secretary Talwar will also join Secretary Kerry in observing the service and sacrifice of U.S and Allied military forces in the Battle of Guadalcanal. He will then travel with Secretary Kerry to Hawaii, where he will meet with senior officials at U.S. Pacific Command.