Defence Cooperation Key to Indo-Russian Bilateral Ties: Singh

Ahead of his meeting with President Dmitry Medvedev for the annual summit-level talks, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh has said that defence cooperation has been a ‘very important aspect’ in Indo-Russian ties.

On his sixth trip to Russia since 2004, Singh arrived in Moscow yesterday for a three-day visit during which three agreements in the field of defence, including one for ending ad-hocism in serving Russian military equipment will be signed.

In addition, the two countries are likely to ink a landmark framework agreement on civil nuclear cooperation.

“Cooperation in the field of defense has been a very important aspect of our cooperation with Russia,” Singh told the Russia Today television channel.

“We have been able to get equipment and technologies from Russia which were not available to us from any other countries,” he noted.

It may be mentioned that Russian President hosted a private dinner last night for Singh and his wife Gursharan Kaur at his countryside residence in Barvikha outside Moscow, an honour so far accorded to US President Barack Obama.

Over dinner, Medvedev and Singh held informal discussions on a wide range of issues including nuclear cooperation and conventional energy.

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