New Delhi: External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj and her US counterpart Rex Tillerson on Wednesday resolved to work closely to deepen Indo-US strategic ties and intensify defence and security cooperation during their first telephonic conversation.
The two leaders also agreed to follow-up the firm resolve expressed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi and President Donald Trump to cooperate closely in the global fight against terrorism, the MEA said tonight.
"The External Affairs Minister and Secretary Tillerson resolved to work together closely to further expand and deepen the multi-faceted strategic partnership between India and the US," it said.
"They emphasised that close and strong relations between India and the US were not only in mutual interest but also had regional and global significance. In this context, they agreed to intensify cooperation in various sectors, including defence and security, energy, and economy," it added.
This was Mr Swaraj's first telephonic conversation with 64-year-old Mr Tillerson, who took over as new US Secretary of State early this month.
Mr Tillerson was administered the oath of office by Vice President Mike Pence in the White House's Oval Office after the Senate approved his nomination by a vote of 56 to 43, with all Republicans in support and most Democrats voting against Mr Tillerson.
Tillerson, who has never held political office, received full backing from President Trump who told him: "Your whole life has prepared you for this moment."
His confirmation as the top US diplomat was welcomed by the White House and the Republican party but opposed by Democratic lawmakers in the Senate, who raked up his ties with Russia and President Putin.