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India, France army chiefs discuss ways to bolster bilateral cooperation


New Delhi, Feb 27 (IANS) France’s Chief of Army Staff General Pierre Schill on Tuesday called on Indian Army chief General Manoj Pande and discussed ways to strengthen bilateral cooperation between the two armies. General Schill is on a three-day visit to India from February 27-29 to strengthen strategic collaboration between the two nations across defence, security, and technology.”They exchanged ideas and held constructive discussions on various contemporary issues, including strengthening bilateral cooperation between the two armies,” the Ministry of Defence said in a statement.Prior to the meeting, a ceremonial Guard of Honour was presented to General Schill at the South Block lawns here where General Pande was also present.The visit commenced with a wreath-laying ceremony at the National War Memorial, where the French army chief paid homage to the fallen heroes of the Indian Armed Forces.”The visit by General Pierre Schill highlights the shared commitment of France and India to strengthen their strategic collaboration across defence, security, and technology.”Such bilateral visits and various exercises between the militaries of both the nations epitomise the longstanding bond between the armed forces and reinforce their dedication to promoting regional stability and international security.”Going further, General Schill will be interacting with defence industry representatives and also witness Pinaka firing demonstration in Rajasthan. He will also be visiting Sapta Shakti Command in Jaipur and interact with senior military commanders.On February 29, he will be addressing the officers at the prestigious National Defence College (NDC).A 95-member contingent and a 33-member band contingent from France marched down the Kartavya Path this year on Republic Day with the French Foreign Legion contingent including six Indians.–IANSmi/vd

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