Indian Army chief to visit Poland, Belarus

March 7th, 2008 - 10:26 pm ICT by admin  

New Delhi, March 7 (IANS) The Indian Army chief, Gen. Deepak Kapoor, will leave Monday on a five-day visit to Poland and Belarus that is aimed at ramping military-military ties with the two countries. This will be Kapoor’s second visit abroad after he assumed office last September. He visited Malaysia and the Philippines in February.

During the visit, Kapoor will interact with senior military and civilian defence hierarchy of the two countries and will discuss ways to strengthen the existing defence ties.

While in Poland, he will lay a wreath at the Tomb of Unsung Soldier. Visits to the National Defence University, service headquarters and operational units have also been planned.

In Belarus, Kapoor will visit defence research facilities and military academies, apart from the historic Mir Castle, the national monument that has witnessed a number of historic battles.

He will also interact with the state military and industrial committee.

“India shares good bilateral relations with Poland and Belarus and these have been strengthened over the years with regular exchange of visits at political and diplomatic levels,” a defence ministry statement Friday said.

“Both these countries are also keen to improve their defence relationship with India. The visit by Gen. Kapoor will add the necessary impetus to the existing defence relationship and broad base it into a mutually beneficial partnership,” the statement added.

Defence relations with Poland “have graduated from military cooperation to comprehensive defence cooperation that includes courses, training for UN peacekeeping operations, and exchange of observers during army exercises,” the statement said.

While relations with Belarus have been on the rise at political and diplomatic levels, the defence relationship “is still at a nascent stage. The visit of Gen. Kapoor will enhance the existing military equipment cooperation and will diversify it to other fields like exchange of visits, attending courses, training for UN peacekeeping operations and the conduct of joint sports and adventure activities,” the statement said.

Kapoor will return March 14.

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