PM Modi Tells China’s Xi: ‘Pak Must Stop Terror Before Talks’

  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  

IBISHKEK— First time after Pulwama attack, Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his Pakistani counterpart Imran Khan were under the same roof. However both leaders ignored each other and decided not to initiate exchange of pleasantry, reports said.

“Both the leaders were standing far from each other which culminated into no interaction. However, both the leaders exchange pleasantries with other leaders but not with each other”, news reports said.

Pakistan PM Imran Khan had earlier said that Pakistan’s relationship with India is probably at its “lowest point” and also expressed his hope that his Indian counterpart Narendra Modi will use his “big mandate” to resolve all differences, including the Kashmir issue.

Earlier Prime Minister Modi raised the issue of “cross-border terrorism” during his talks with Chinese President Xi Jinping here and said India expects “concrete action” by Islamabad to create an atmosphere “free of terror for the resumption of dialogue.”

Prime Minister Modi met President Xi on the sidelines of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) Summit in Bishkek and discussed the full spectrum of bilateral relations.

This is the first meeting between the two leaders after Modi’s re-election following the stunning victory of the BJP in the general elections last month.

Briefing the reporters after the meeting, Foreign Secretary Vijay Gokhale said that there was a brief discussion on Pakistan during the talks between the two leaders.

He said India has a consistent position with respect to Pakistan that it wants peaceful relations with Islamabad.

Gokhale said Prime Minister Modi told President Xi that he has made efforts to improve ties with Islamabad but these efforts have been “derailed”.

“Pakistan needs to create an atmosphere free of terror, but at this stage we do not see it happening. We expect Islamabad to take concrete action” to resume talks, Gokhale quoted the prime minister as telling President Xi.

Modi’s comments came ahead of President Xi’s meeting with Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan, who is also here in the Kyrgyz capital to attend the SCO summit.

Khan has twice written to Prime Minister Modi, seeking resumption of dialogue on all issues, including Kashmir.

Responding to Khan’s overtures, Prime Minister Modi told his Pakistani counterpart that creating trust and an environment free of violence and terrorism was essential for fostering peace and prosperity in the region.

India has not been engaging with Pakistan since an attack on the Air Force base at Pathankot in January of 2016 by a Pakistan-based terror group, maintaining that talks and terror cannot go together.

Early this year, tensions flared up between India and Pakistan after a suicide bomber of Pakistan-based Jaish-e-Muhammed (JeM) killed 40 CRPF personnel in Kashmir’s Pulwama district.

Amid mounting outrage, the Indian Air Force (IAF) carried out a counter-terror operation, hitting the biggest JeM training camp in Balakot in Pakistan on February 26. The next day, Pakistan Air Force retaliated and downed a MiG-21 in an aerial combat and captured an IAF pilot, who was later handed over to India.

China played a role in easing tensions between New Delhi and Islamabad.

Xi To Visit India 

New Delhi: After Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Chinese Premier Xi Jingping’s meeting on the sidelines of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) summit in Bishkes, Xi has accepted Modi’s invitation to visit India later this year for an informal summit.

“PM Modi invited Xi (to India) for the next informal summit. Xi confirmed his readiness to visit India this year and that both sides should begin preparations,” said foreign secretary Vijay Keshav Gokhale.

Modi described the meeting as “extremely fruitful meeting” with Chinese President Xi Jinping and discussed the full spectrum of bilateral relations as they vowed to work together to improve the economic and cultural ties.

This is the first meeting between the two leaders after Modi’s re-election following the stunning victory of the BJP in the general elections last month.

The meeting also comes a month after the 1267 Al Qaeda Sanctions Committee of the powerful UN Security Council designated Pakistan-based terror group Jaish-e-Mohammed chief Masood Azhar as a global terrorist after China lifted its technical hold on the proposal to blacklist him.

The meeting began with President Xi congratulating Prime Minister Modi over his election victory.

“After the election results in India, I got your message, and today again you wish me on the victory, I am very grateful to you for this,” Modi replied.

Xi had extended “heartfelt congratulations” to Prime Minister Modi for winning the general elections last month, in a rare gesture of greeting a foreign leader well before the official announcement of the results.

“On behalf of all Indians, I wish you a very happy birthday,” Modi told Xi, greeting the Chinese leader who will turn 66 on June 15.

“As you said, in the days to come, we both can progress on several subjects. We both have a contemporary tenure to work more,” he said.

“After our meeting in Wuhan, we have seen a new momentum and stability in our relations. There has been a rapid progress in the strategic communication between the two sides, leading to be more sensitive towards each other’s concerns and interests. And there has been new areas for further cooperation since then,” Modi told Xi in his opening remarks.

The 2018 Wuhan summit between Prime Minister Modi and President Xi was largely credited to have turned around the bilateral relations soured by the 73-day Doklam standoff, triggered by Chinese troops attempts to build a road close to Indian border in an area also claimed by Bhutan in 2017.

After the Wuhan summit, both the countries stepped up efforts to improve relations on different spheres including the military-to-military ties.

The two leaders have met more than 10 times in the last five years, including thrice after their informal summit in Wuhan — first at the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) summit held in June last in China’s Qingdao, the second time at the BRICS summit in South Africa’s Johannesburg in July and third time in December last on the sidelines of the G-20 summit in Argentina.

External Affairs Ministry spokesperson Raveesh Kumar said the two leaders had a warm meeting. “Leaders discussed all aspects of enriching our bilateral relations and recognised the positive role of strategic communication in deepening our partnership,” Kumar said.

Ahead of the meeting, China hinted that President Xi would highlight the need to forge a united front against US President Donald Trump’s policies of trade protectionism and unilateralism using tariffs as a weapon.

China and the US have been in an escalating conflict over trade for the past year. The scope of the battle has expanded in recent months as Washington has tightened trade restrictions on Chinese telecom giant Huawei.

Chinese officials hope that India, which is also facing trade frictions with the US specially over termination of its designation as a ‘beneficiary developing country’ under the Generalised System of Preferences (GSP), would join the fight against Trump’s protectionist policies.

Prime Minister Modi arrived in the Kyrgyz capital on Thursday for the SCO summit, the first multilateral engagement post his re-election. The SCO is a China-led 8-member economic and security bloc with India and Pakistan being admitted to the grouping in 2017.

The economic and commercial engagement between India and China constitutes a major component of the bilateral relations with bilateral trade which crossed USD 95 billion last year and is set to cross USD 100 billion this year.


  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

KO SUPPLEMENTS