Rishi Sunak joins Ajit Doval-UK NSA meeting in London


London: The High Commission of India has said UK Prime Minister Rishi Sunak took part in a meeting between India’s National Security Advisor Ajit Doval and his British counterpart Tim Barrow in London for a while. Doval’s trip to London follows his meeting with US National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan in Washington, which took place on Tuesday.

“A special gesture by PM Rishi Sunak to join for a while. NSA dialogue between Sir Tim Barrow and M. Doval at the Cabinet Office. Deeply value PM’s assurance of his government’s full support to deepen strategic partnership in trade, defence, S&T. Look forward to visit of Sir Tim to India soon,” The Indian High Commission said in a tweet.

The meeting comes two days after Doval met the members of a top American India-centric strategic and business advocacy group during which they discussed bilateral ties, particularly in the field of defence, space, and cybersecurity field.

Doval met Barrow in the backdrop of British State broadcaster BBC trying to rake up the 2002 Gujarat riots and target Prime Minister Narendra Modi. On his way back from a positive dialogue with his US counterpart Jake Sullivan in Washington, Doval was in London having a candid dialogue with Barrow on the state of bilateral relationship, global strategic environment with the Ukraine war in focus. The two NSAs were expected to exchange notes on terrorism emanating in the Af-Pak region and the overall situation in the Middle East.

India and the UK share a comprehensive strategic partnership with each other. The two nations have also concluded six rounds of negotiations for a trade deal and will begin the next round very soon. India and UK began the negotiations for the Free Trade Agreement between the two nations in January 2022. The UK-India free trade agreement is well-advanced. Although trade at the moment is worth 29.6 billion pounds, India is only the 12th largest trading partner of the UK.

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