Enhance connectivity without infringing sovereignty: Modi at SCO

Prime Minister Narendra Modi today called for coordinated efforts among Shanghai Cooperation Organisation members to fight terrorism and enhance connectivity without impinging upon sovereignty and territorial integrity.

Xi also congratulated India on becoming a member of the SCO and expressed hope that two would work together to strengthen the Eurasian grouping.

It was the first meeting between the two leaders after India boycotted the high-profile Belt and Road Forum held in Beijing last month in which 29 world leaders took part.

The ministry will actively promote cooperation between small and medium-sized enterprises and local governments from SCO member countries.

"The inclusion of India and Pakistan will add to the political dimension of the SCO, whose members' value systems, characteristics of national development and core concerns, will be more diversified", the editorial said.

Modi also met his Pakistani counterpart Nawaz Sharif on Thursday night and exchanged pleasantries at a cultural gala in Astana, amid frosty bilateral ties, deadlocked talks and escalation of hostilities along the LoC in Jammu and Kashmir.

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New Delhi is smarting over China's refusal to allow it entry into the Nuclear Suppliers Group, a global cartel that controls nuclear trade, and over Beijing blocking a request at the United Nations to sanction a Pakistan-based militant blamed for attacks on India.

-Prime Minister Narendra Modi meets Chinese President Xi Jinping in Astana.

-PM Modi begins addressing the SCO Summit.

A summit of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) is under way in Kazakhstan's capital, Astana. "In fact, if handled well, (it) can even become opportunity", he said, indicating India's softening stand and efforts to bring down the temperature in its relationship with China. He further said that Islamabad is not unfamiliar with the working of the SCO but, it has a lot to learn.

While India's statement on connectivity targeted the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor being a part of the One-Belt One Road, the comments on terrorism were aimed at Pakistan-sponsored cross-border terrorism.

The leaders of India, China, Russia and Central Asian countries will discuss ways to combat terrorism and boost trade, including peace and security in the region at the SCO Summit in the wake of the terror strikes in many countries.


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