New Delhi: Prime Minister Narendra Modi arrived in Washington today for a three-day visit during which he will participate in the first in-person Quad Summit with the US, Australia and Japan. He will also have his first bilateral meet with President Joe Biden.
Here are the top 10 points in this developing story:
1. Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who has a packed schedule, will also address the UN General Assembly. He arrived at the Joint Base Andrews in Washington DC to a grand welcome by a crowd of Indian Americans chanting his name and waving the Indian flag amid light showers. Despite the early morning rain, a significant number of Indian Americans had gathered to welcome the Prime Minister.
2.PM Modi was received at the airport by senior officials of the Biden Administration and India’s Ambassador to the US, Taranjit Singh Sandhu. “Grateful to the Indian community in Washington DC for the warm welcome. Our diaspora is our strength. It is commendable how the Indian diaspora has distinguished itself across the world,” PM Modi tweeted.
3.The PM, visiting the US for the 7th time since assuming office in 2014, said this visit is an “occasion to strengthen our strategic partnership with the US and consolidate ties with Japan and Australia”. Before leaving India, he also said in his meeting with President Biden, he would review the India-US Comprehensive Global Strategic Partnership and exchange views on regional and global issues of mutual interest.
4.On the Quad Summit, PM Modi said his meeting with President Biden, Prime Minister Scott Morrison of Australia and Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga of Japan would provide an opportunity to take stock of the outcomes of a virtual summit in March and “identify priorities for future engagements based on our shared vision for the Indo-Pacific region”.
5.The Afghan situation and its implications, China’s growing assertiveness, ways to stem radicalism and cross-border terrorism, and further expansion of India-US global partnership are expected to be the central focus of the talks between PM Modi and President Biden in Washington on September 24.
6.On his first visit abroad beyond the neighbourhood since the COVID-19 pandemic outbreak, the PM is accompanied by a high-level delegation including External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar and National Security Adviser Ajit Doval.
7.A meeting with Vice President Kamala Harris, who has her roots in India, is also on the itinerary. Referring to his first meet with her, PM Modi said he was “looking forward” to the talks to explore opportunities for cooperation, particularly in the area of science and technology. They had earlier spoken on the phone in June.
8.The Prime Minister is also scheduled to meet a number of top executives of major American companies in Washington, including the heads of Qualcomm, Adobe, Blackstone, General Atomics and First Solar, reported news agency ANI.
9.The PM will travel to New York on September 24 and address the United Nations General Assembly the next day. His speech will be centred on global challenges including the COVID-19 pandemic, the need to combat terrorism, climate change and other important issues.
10.The last time PM Modi visited the US was in September 2019 when he and then US President Donald Trump addressed the ‘Howdy Modi’ event in Houston.-(NDTV)