New Delhi, Jan 29 (PTI) India and Kyrgyzstan on Tuesday vowed to jointly combat the scourge of terrorism and collaborate on deradicalisation, while also stepping up ties in key fields such as defence, development partnership and trade.Also Read - Health Tips: What Is Dengue Fever? Causes, Symptoms And Preventive Measures, EXPLAINED | Watch Video

The two countries also reviewed their cooperation in the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) and the UN during talks between External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj and her Kyrgyz counterpart Chingiz Azamatovich Aidarbekov, the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) said in a statement. Also Read - PM Narendra Modi To Address Nation At 10 AM Today; Here's What To Expect

The two ministers held wide-ranging discussions on bilateral, regional and multilateral issues of mutual interest. Also Read - NTA Neet Result 2021 Delayed, Final Scores Likely to be Declared After October 26 | BIG Updates For Students

Noting the close cultural and historical ties between India and Kyrgyzstan and reiterating the importance the two countries attach to their bilateral relationship, they agreed to expand India-Kyrgyz cooperation in a number of areas, particularly in the field of development partnership, the statement said.

“Acknowledging the threat posed by terrorism and radicalisation to their societies, the two ministers agreed to work together to fight the scourge of terrorism and cooperate in exchanging experience in the field of deradicalisation,” it said.

During the meeting, Aidarbekov briefed Swaraj on Kyrgyzstan’s efforts to liberalise its economy, create business friendly conditions and attract foreign investment including that from Indian companies.

Giving an overview of new infrastructure projects in Kyrgyzstan, including in the fields of railways and hydro-electricity, Aidarbekov invited India to participate in such projects, the statement said.

Noting that more than 9,000 Indian students studying in various Kyrgyz educational institutions, it was acknowledged that there was potential to enhance cooperation in the field of education by encouraging collaboration between universities of both the countries.

Defence cooperation, capacity building, training, IT and e-governance, healthcare and pharmaceuticals, tourism, movie production and culture were also discussed during the meeting, the MEA said.

The Kyrgyz Foreign Minister and Swaraj hailed the initiative of the India-Central Asia Dialogue at the level of foreign ministers with the participation of Afghanistan which was held in Samarkand, Uzbekistan, from January 12-13, as creating a platform for region-wide cooperation which would bring benefits to all the participating countries in terms of enhanced trade and economic cooperation and connectivity.

Foreign Minister Aidarbekov said that he was looking forward to participating in the next edition of the Dialogue which would be hosted by India in 2020.

The External Affairs Minister conveyed her support to Kyrgyzstan in its work as the SCO Chair this year and for the success of the SCO Summit which the Kyrgyz Republic will host in June.

The Kyrgyz Foreign Minister reiterated the invitation extended to Prime Minister Narendra Modi for participation in the SCO Summit and paying a bilateral visit to the Kyrgyz Republic. He also invited Swaraj to visit Kyrgyzstan. She had visited Kyrgyzstan in August 2018.

Earlier, Foreign Minister Aidarbekov called on Vice President M Venkaiah Naidu and also met the Minister of State for Finance Shiv Pratap Shukla. He is scheduled to visit to Taj Mahal before returning to Kyrgyzstan on January 31.

On Monday, Aidarbekov had addressed the India-Kyrgyzstan Business Forum here and said talks are going on with India over the possibility of creating a joint financial mechanism that will open up new prospects of business between the two countries.

This is published unedited from the PTI feed.