The United States deputy secretary of state Wendy Sherman is in India on a three-day visit from October 5 to 8. She will meet with foreign secretary Harsh Vardhan Shringla on Wednesday before holding talks with external affairs minister S Jaishankar and National Security Advisor Ajit Doval.
Sherman’s visit comes nearly two weeks after Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi held bilateral talks with US President Joe Biden and attended the Quad meet. The US official is expected to address the political situation in Afghanistan after the Taliban takeover and focus on bilateral ties between India and the US.
“Deputy Secretary Sherman’s visit will be a useful opportunity to continue the regular dialogue and further strengthen the India-US Comprehensive Global Strategic Partnership,” the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) said.
Sherman will also call on minister of external affairs, S Jaishankar, and National Security Advisor Ajit Doval, the statement added.
Her meeting with foreign secretary Shringla will focus on regional issues, “pertaining to South Asia and the Indo-Pacific region”, as well as contemporary global issues – including the evolving situation in the war-torn land of Afghanistan, it said.
The two officials, Sherman and Shringla, will participate today in a special session of the India-Ideas summit being organised by the US India Business Council (USIBC). Sherman will also travel to Mumbai for engagements with the business community.
Early last month, Harsh Vardhan Shringla met top Biden administration officials, including Secretary of State Antony Blinken and Deputy Secretary Wendy Sherman, and held substantive discussions with them on the strategic bilateral ties and regional and global issues like the current situation in Afghanistan after the Taliban seized Kabul.
That was the first high-level discussion between the officials of the two countries after the withdrawal of American troops from Afghanistan on August 31.
“Discussions touched on bilateral ties and the situation in Afghanistan,” Ministry of External Affairs Spokesperson Arindam Bagchi said in a tweet after the meeting.