After PM Modi’s strong message to global community on ECOSOC agenda, Modi-Abe Summit could be held in October

After PM Modi’s strong message to global community on ECOSOC agenda, Modi-Abe Summit could be held in October

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Prime Minister Narendra Modi has sent out a strong message to the international community on shaping the United Nations Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) agenda, Union Minister of External Affairs S Jaishankar said today.

The minister tweeted:  Sabka Saath, Sabka Vikaas, Sabka Vishwas – resonating with the core SDG commitment of leaving no one behind.

At the High-Level Segment of the UN Economic and Social Council Session, 2020, on Friday PM Modi said, via video conference, “In our joint fight against Covid-19, India has extended medical and other assistance to over 150 countries.”

He added that in India, the fight against the pandemic is a people’s movement, by combining the efforts of Government and civil society. The pandemic has severely tested resilience of all nations. In India’s fight against COVID, the country’s grass-roots health system is helping India ensure one of the best recovery rates in the world, said Modi.

He further said that India’s Housing for All programme will ensure that every Indian will have a safe and secure roof over their head by 2022, when India completes 75 years as an independent nation.

Stating that multilateralism needs to represent reality of contemporary world, the PM said that only reformed multilateralism with reformed UN at its cente can meet aspirations of humanity. “While celebrating 75 years of the United Nations, let us pledge to reform global multilateral system. The UN was originally born from furies of World War II and today, fury of COVID-19 pandemic provides context for its rebirth and reform,” said PM Modi.

Meanwhile, India and Japan have restarted discussions to firm up dates for the annual summit between prime ministers Narendra Modi and Shinzo Abe, possibly around October. The summit is likely to focus on an expansionist China that has been attempting to change the status quo on its borders with India, and in the East China Sea around the Senkaku Islands, sources said.

The Modi-Abe summit, initially scheduled to be held in December 2019 in Guwahati, was put off due to protests in Assam over the passage of Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) law. Discussions on the next date were put on hold after the virus that originated in China spread across the world soon after, killing over 600,000 people and grounding the world economy.

But as the world suffered due to the health crisis, China’s Xi Jinping went on an overdrive to expand its territory in the South China Sea and its land border with India. China has lately initiated the process to get its army to disengage along the Line of Actual Control (LAC) in Ladakh but the troop withdrawal process has been a slow and deliberate one.

A defence white paper by the Abe government released earlier this week counted China’s aggressive moves in the East China Sea and the South China Sea and its “relentless attempts” to alter status quo by coercion as a key concern.