Foreign Secretary Vinay Mohan Kwatra speaks to US Deputy Secretary of State Wendy Sherman

Foreign Secretary Vinay Mohan Kwatra on Wednesday spoke to US Deputy Secretary of State Wendy Sherman focusing on ways to further strengthen the strategic partnership between the two countries, including in the Indo-Pacific.

The telephonic conversation came a day ahead of the second global virtual summit on Covid-19 being hosted by US President Joe Biden, which will be attended by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

“Pleasure to connect with US Deputy Secretary of State Wendy Sherman @DeputySecState. We agreed to continue our engagement towards strengthening the India-US strategic partnership,” Kwatra tweeted.

On her part, Sherman said that the strength of the US-India partnership was reaffirmed and mentioned the shared commitment to a prosperous, free and open Indo-Pacific.

“Great speaking with India’s new Foreign Secretary Vinay Kwatra to wish him well in his new role. We reaffirmed the strength of the #USIndia partnership and our shared commitment to a prosperous, free, and open Indo-Pacific,” she said in a tweet.

Kwatra took charge as India’s new foreign secretary on May 1. A 1988-batch Indian Foreign Service (IFS) officer, he succeeded Harsh Vardhan Shringla who retired from the service.

Kwatra was serving as India’s envoy to Nepal before assuming the charge of the foreign secretary. He is known to have extensive expertise in dealing with India’s neighbourhood as well as the US, China and Europe. Before his diplomatic posting to Nepal in 2020, he served as the Ambassador of India to France from August 2017 to February 2020.

He took charge as the foreign secretary at a time India is dealing with various geopolitical developments including the Ukraine conflict, the severe economic crisis in Sri Lanka and situation in Afghanistan and developments in the Indo-Pacific.

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