Trump invites Modi to G7 as first ever virtual bilateral summit between India-Australia to be held on June 4

    03-Jun-2020
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- Nirendra Dev
 
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New Delhi: In a major boost to India's global standing in the context of changing dynamics and China getting international heat, US President Donald Trump on Tuesday extended an invitation to Prime Minister Narendra Modi to attend the next G-7 Summit to be held in the United States.
 
At present, the United States, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan and the United Kingdom are members of G-7and invitation extended to Modi is only a reflection of India's new found position in the fast emerging new world order.
 
"The exceptional warmth and candour of the conversation reflected the special nature of the Indo-US ties, as well as the friendship and mutual esteem between both leaders," an MEA statement said here.
 
President Trump warmly recalled his visit to India in February this year while Modi said that Trump's visit vis-a-vis 'Namaste Trump' mega event in Ahmedabad had been memorable and historic on many accounts, and had also added "new dynamism" to the bilateral relationship. The two leaders also exchanged views on other topical issues, such as the COVID-19 situation in the two countries, the situation on the India-China border, and the need for reforms in the World Health Organisation.
 
India along with the US had recently pressed for a probe into the causes those led to the origin of Coronavirus which had originally began from Wuhan in China.
 
President Trump spoke about the US Presidency of the Group of Seven, and conveyed his desire to expand the ambit of the grouping beyond the existing membership, to include other important countries including India. In this context, he extended an invitation to Prime Minister Modi to attend the next G-7 Summit to be held in USA, the statement said.
 
Prime Minister Modi commended President Trump for his creative and far-sighted approach, acknowledging the fact that such an expanded forum would be in keeping with the emerging realities of the post-COVID world.
 
The Prime Minister said that India would be happy to work with the US and other countries to ensure the success of the proposed Summit.
 
Prime Minister Modi expressed concern regarding the ongoing civil disturbances in the US, and conveyed his best wishes for an early resolution of the situation.
 
Mr Modi and Mr Trump had last held tele talks on April 4 and both had agreed to deploy the full strength of the India – US partnership to resolutely and effectively combat COVID-19. Both the leaders also discussed about supply of hydroxychloroquine from India. The June 2 tele talks were also first since escalation of the border tension between India and the United States.
 
Importantly, Eliot Engel, chairman of the powerful US House foreign relations committee, has slammed Chinese “aggression” for continuing tensions along the border with India. “I am extremely concerned by the ongoing Chinese aggression along the Line of Actual Control on the India-China border.,” Engel, a Democrat, said in a statement. He has further said - “China is demonstrating once again that it is willing to bully its neighbours rather than resolve conflicts according to international law.”
 
India-Australia ties 

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Meanwhile, government sources revealed to Organiser that India – Australia Virtual Leaders’ Summit will be held on June 4, Thursday.
 
This will be the first time that Prime Minister Modi would be holding a “bilateral” Virtual Summit with a foreign leader.Since the high-level visit of PM Scott Morrison to India was in the pipeline (13-16 January and later in May 2020), the two leaders decided to continue the engagement even though it was in the form of a Virtual Meeting. This is the first time that India is holding a Virtual Summit. Australia has already done one such bilateral virtual summit with Singapore in March 2020.
 
The focus at the talks between Modi and Australian counterpart Scott Morrison would be on the "positive trajectory" in bilateral relations. Modi and Morrison have already met on four occasions on the sidelines of multilateral meetings.
 
India and Australia have very warm and friendly relations. The two nations have much in common, underpinned by shared values of pluralistic, Westminster-style democracies, Commonwealth traditions, the long-standing people-to-people ties, and sporting links. The economies too have many 'complementarities' with potential to enhance bilateral trade and investment, sources said.