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India, Japan to boost counter-terror operations

New Delhi, July 6 (Calcutta Tube) Taking a long-range view of their security ties, India and Japan Tuesday held talks to intensify counter-terror and anti-piracy cooperation.

During the first-ever ‘2+2 dialogue’ of sub-cabinet/senior officials, Foreign Secretary Nirupama Rao and Defence Secretary Pradeep Kumar held talks with Japan’s Deputy Foreign Minister Kenichiro Sasae and Vice-Minister for Defence Kimito Nakae on a range of strategic and defence issues.

‘Each side provided the other with an exposition of its defence and security policies in the framework of their respective security environments,’ the Indian external affairs ministry said in a statement.

The two sides discussed non-traditional threats to security and decided to hold the next meeting of the India-Japan Joint Working Group on Counter-Terrorism at an early date, said the ministry.

The two sides also discussed ways and means to expand cooperation in anti-piracy operations in the Gulf of Aden and reviewed the joint naval exercises.

Against this backdrop, the two sides reviewed the India-Japan joint declaration on security cooperation and decided to give renewed momentum to implement their action plan.

The 2+2 dialogue was announced during then Japanese Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama’s visit to India in December 2009.

Besides India, Japan has such a dialogue framework with only the US and Australia, bringing to the fore the growing importance of New Delhi in Tokyo’s strategic calculus.

The next round of the India-Japan 2+2 dialogue will be held in Tokyo in 2011.

The prospects a bilateral civil nuclear pact, following the first round of nuclear negotiations a week ago in Tokyo, were also discussed by the two sides.

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