Obama: US, India Natural Allies
Countries will have 'defining relationship' for 21st century
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Nov 24, 2009 1:25 PM CST
President Barack Obama welcomes India's Prime Minister Manmohan Singh during a State Arrival in the East Room of the White House in Washington, Tuesday, Nov. 24, 2009.    (Charles Dharapak)
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(Newser) – President Obama declared that US ties with India will be "one of the defining relationships" of the 21st century as he welcomed India's prime minister for the first state visit of the Obama administration. At the conclusion of about two hours of talks, Obama said he and Prime Minister Manmohan Singh had agreed to "work even closer" on sharing information between law enforcement and intelligence agencies. Singh, too, promised increased cooperation with Washington to counter terror.

Obama said the US and India share the "bold experiments" of becoming democracies after breaking from rule by a colonial power, and in modern times both have known the pain of international terrorism. "Our nations are two global leaders, driven not to dominate other nations but to build a future of security and prosperity for all nations." Singh said India and the US are separated by distance but bound by common values of "democracy, pluralism, rule of law, and respect for fundamental human freedoms."