The continued cooperation in the Indo-Pacific region and also the stability in Afghanistan would be two key issues that would be up for discussion between Trump and Modi.
There are a lot of expectations from Donald Trump during his India visit that begins today. The talks that the US President will hold with Prime Minister Modi will not just be bilateral in nature.
Other issues such as peace in the Indian Ocean, China and Afghanistan will also be discussed in detail between the two leaders.
What is on the table:
The continued cooperation in the Indo-Pacific region and also the stability in Afghanistan would be two key issues that would be up for discussion between Trump and Modi. The other issue would be with regard to the freedom of navigation in the South China Sea.
The demilitarisation of the area is also up for discussion. Sources told MyNation that the QUAD initiative would be discussed with Trump. The QUAD comprises the United States, Japan, Australia and India. The operationalisation of the Indo-Pacific strategy would be discussed as PM Modi is keen on involving the ASEAN countries to reinforce the QUAD initiative.
Hollywood to Bollywood:
The Indo-Pacific has been defined by Donald Trump as a region that spans from Hollywood to Bollywood. Modi has a geographical vision of the Indo-Pacific which ranges from the eastern shores of Africa to the western shores of the United States.
This would mean that the ASEAN would act as an anchor. Several leaders across the globe including the US are inclined towards Modi’s vision on the geography of the Indo-Pacific region. The two leaders would discuss these issues in depth.
The US pull out of Afghanistan is another key issue that would be discussed between Modi and Trump. While Pakistan and China would also be discussed, Afghanistan would get top billing during the bi-lateral.
Modi would tell Trump that the sanctuaries across the Durand Line, which is the border between Afghanistan and Pakistan should be closed. There are rest and recreation sanctuaries here and if the same is not closed, then peace and stability not never be achieved by Kabul, India would tell the US President.
The source cited above said that Afghanistan would be one of the central themes of the summit. Counter terrorism in the context of both Afghanistan and Pakistan would be discussed between the two leaders.
In 2015, during the Modi-Obama summit, it was declared that the two countries could define a counter terrorism relationship for the 21st century. It was decided to combat the full spectrum of terrorist threats and keep the respective homelands free from terror. Both countries had named the Lashkar-e-Tayiba and Jaish-e-Mohammad as key threats and urged Pakistan to bring the terrorists running these groups to justice.
In 2017, during the Modi-Trump summit in the US, both countries spoke about the problem of cross border terrorism. Both leaders had called on Pakistan to ensure that its territory was not used to launch terrorist attacks.
When the two leaders meet on Tuesday, it is expected that Pakistan would be discussed. A joint statement on Pakistan urging it to take stern action on terrorism would be issued. This would be important as it would come in the backdrop of the Financial Action Task Force issuing a stern warning to Pakistan, while keeping it in the grey list.
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Last Updated 24, Feb 2020, 10:01 AM