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US National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan Postpones India Visit, Prioritizes Regional Tensions, Middle East Crisis Alters Diplomatic Agenda

Bilateral Engagement Deferred: US National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan Delays India Visit Amid Middle East Unrest

New Delhi, 16-04-2024 : Amidst escalating tensions in the Middle East, the National Security Advisor of the United States, Jake Sullivan, has made the decision to postpone his scheduled visit to India this week. The postponement comes as Sullivan prioritizes addressing the unfolding events in the Middle East.

A spokesperson from the US Embassy conveyed Sullivan’s anticipation to reschedule the Initiative for Critical and Emerging Technology (iCET) annual review at the earliest opportunity. “Due to ongoing events in the Middle East, NSA Sullivan has postponed his trip to India this week. NSA Sullivan looks forward to holding the Initiative for Critical and Emerging Technology (iCET) annual review at the next earliest possible date and remains personally committed to advancing our deeply consequential and multifaceted partnership with India,” the spokesperson stated.

In line with this decision, US President Joe Biden also expressed eagerness for the forthcoming meeting of the Quad leaders, underscoring the commitment to collaboration with India to realize shared objectives for a free, open, and prosperous Indo-Pacific region.

Originally slated for April 17, Sullivan’s visit was anticipated to further strengthen bilateral ties, especially in the realm of technology cooperation. However, the global crises in Ukraine and the Middle East prompted the rescheduling of the annual iCET review meeting, which was initially planned for February this year.

The iCET initiative, launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi and President Joe Biden in May 2022, aims to facilitate outcome-oriented collaboration in new and emerging technologies. Notably, initiatives like the Defence Innovation Bridge, a product of iCET, have catalyzed cooperation between US and Indian startups in the defense sector, as highlighted by Defence Secretary Giridhar Aramane during the INDUS-X Summit in New Delhi.

Despite the postponement, the United States reiterated its commitment to its strategic partnership with India. Matthew Miller, the official spokesperson of the US State Department, emphasized India’s significance as the world’s largest democracy and an indispensable strategic partner of the United States, affirming the enduring strength of the bilateral relationship.