Modi meets Xi, calls for respecting each others core concerns

PM-Modi-meets-Pakistan-PM-Nawaz-Sharif-in-Kazakhstan

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Friday met Chinese President Xi Jinping and Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif in Astana, Kazakhstan ahead of India's induction as full member of the SCO along with Pakistan.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi today said that all the countries need to tackle terrorism and extremism in a coordinated manner. The two leaders would be in the same room on Friday too as they formally join the six-nation SCO grouping that focuses on security and trade. "We will continue to work together", said Modi.

India will be joining as an SCO full member which comprises of China, Kazakhstan, Kyrgzstan, Russia, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan.

This is the first such meeting between the leaders after India boycotted the high-profile Belt and Road Forum held last which in Beijing and was attended by at least 29 countries including Pakistan.

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PM Modi said that connectivity with SCO countries is a great priority for India.

The Iranian foreign minister also in this meeting referred to the strategic talks in Kabul and asserted that committees have been formed to follow up the implementation of agreements. China has said that it supports Iran's membership of the security bloc, as requested by Russian Federation, and that the subject is under discussion at the summit, despite having been refused previous year.

With Modi's speech, delivered in Hindi at the Palace of Independence where the Shanghai Cooperation Summit is being held, India sent a strong message to both countries on the hot-button issues confronting the relationships with the two neighbours.

Vladimir Putin also proposed the renewal of a Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO)-Afghanistan contact group to settle the conflict in the Islamic republic.

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"We spoke about India-China relations and how to further improve ties", Modi tweeted after his meeting with Xi.

"(China and India) should strengthen multilateral communication and consultation, and appropriately control and manage differences and sensitive issues", Xi said, according to the post.

The two leaders met in Astana, Kazakhstan on the sidelines on the Shanghai Corporation Organisation summit.

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.

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"IS cells are now operating in SCO countries, and this has been established during the investigation into the St. Petersburg terrorist attack in Russian Federation", he said.

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