French Army chief in India to ramp up defence relations

Last Updated: Mon, Jan 31, 2011 16:10 hrs

New Delhi, Jan 31 (IANS) French Army chief General Elrick Irastorza Monday arrived here on a three-day visit, seeking to ramp up defence cooperation and relations between India and France and initiate joint training programmes.

Irastorza will meet Defence Minister A.K. Antony and the three services chiefs, apart from visiting an army formation during his stay here.

'The French Army chief will finalise the schedule of joint exercises between the two armies and is also expected to hold discussion on issues of mutual interest with the Indian defence top brass,' Indian Army officers said.

India and France already have a robust joint exercise between their navies and the air forces. These will be followed up with the army-to-army exercises, they said.