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January 25, 2021
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Indian army to gain access to US satellite data, agreement today

ranathj meeting pompeo

The Indian military is all set to bolster its warfare and artillery with access to the satellite network of the United States. It will enable the army to target enemy positions with more precision. The key pact will be signed On Tuesday to share real-time geo-spatial intelligence, information on maps and satellite images for defence.

US defence secy. Mark T Esper who is in India met with Defence Minister Rajnath Singh on Monday to take the alliance further.

“The two ministers expressed satisfaction that an agreement of BECA will be signed during the visit,” said a statement from the Indian side after the meeting.

Esper has accompanied US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo for the 2+2 ministerial dialogue slated for Tuesday. The BECA will be signed at that meeting.

External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar also met with Pompeo over dinner during which they discussed maritime security, counter-terrorism, open connectivity and resilient supply chains.

The BECA is part of the three ‘foundational agreements’ defining the bilateral ties between the two countries. The first pact — Logistics Exchange Memorandum of Association — was signed in August 2016, permitting the respective militaries to replenish material and fuel from each other’s bases.

The Communications Compatibility and Security Agreement signed in 2018 facilitates access to advanced defence systems and enables India to optimally utilise its existing US-origin platforms.

Last year in December, India and the US leveraged and improved their strategic ties by inking the Industrial Security Annex.

The US declared India as a “major defence partner in June 2016. Rajnath and Esper deliberated over bilateral defence cooperation regarding military-to-military cooperation, secure communication systems and information sharing and industrial issues.

India is at the crossroads of a big showdown with China as the border dispute along the LAC refuses to tone down with both sides standing toe to toe and well-prepared for any exigency. Hence, this is an important development between India and the U.S. and China would be having a close watch for all latest happenings. 

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