Modi, Trump discuss terrorism but no mention of visas

Prime Minister Narendra Modi and U.S. President Donald Trump arrive for the joint press conference in the Rose Garden of the White House on Monday. Photo credit: @narendramodi
Prime Minister Narendra Modi and U.S. President Donald Trump arrive for the joint press conference in the Rose Garden of the White House on Monday. Photo credit: @narendramodi

In their joint statement, Modi and Trump also touched on trade, security, bilateral co-operation and instability in Afghanistan

Prime Minister Narendra Modi and US President Donald Trump vowed to fight against terrorism even as they enlisted terrorist groups such as Al-Qa’ida, ISIS, Jaish-e-Mohammad, Lashkar-e-Tayyiba and D-Company with American designating the Hizb-ul-Mujahideen chief Syed Salahuddin.

In a 20-minute one-on-one meeting between Modi and Trump, it was decided that a new consulting mechanism will be set up on domestic and international terrorist designations listing proposals. “The leaders announced increased cooperation to prevent terrorist travel and to disrupt global recruitment efforts by expanding intelligence-sharing and operational-level counterterrorism cooperation,” the statement highlighted.

Both sides decided to exchange information on known and suspected terrorists for travel screening even as they decided to strengthen exchange of information between the intelligence officials on both sides over movements and linkages of terrorist groups and their leaders, as well as on raising and moving of funds by terrorist groups.

“The leaders also affirmed their support for a UN Comprehensive Convention on International Terrorism that will advance and strengthen the framework for global cooperation and reinforce the message that no cause or grievance justifies terrorism. They also pledged to work together to prevent proliferation of weapons of mass destruction and their delivery systems and to deny access to such weapons by terrorists and non-state actors,” it said.

Defence Cooperation

Reiterating India’s recognition by the US as a ‘Major Defence Partner’, both sides decided to work together on advanced defense equipment and technology. The decision to buy ‘Sea Guardian’ drones from US was also finalised by India during the talks.

“As global nonproliferation partners, the United States expressed strong support for India’s early membership in the Nuclear Suppliers Group, the Wassenaar Arrangement, and the Australia Group. President Trump reaffirmed the support of the United States for India’s permanent membership on a reformed UN Security Council,” the statement said.

Trade, Energy and Visa

However, contrary to widespread expectation, the joint statement, which was issued post Modi’s meeting with Trump and other senior US officials, had no mention of the issues pertaining to the temporary work visas H1B that has rattled the Indian IT industry.

There was also no mention of the fact that both sides would target to achieve bilateral trade in goods and services worth $500 billion, which was decided between Modi and former US President Barack Obama in 2015. Instead, both sides decided to address excess capacity in industrial sectors and urged their respective officials to improve bilateral trade.

“Prime Minister Modi and President Trump looked forward to conclusion of contractual agreements between Westinghouse Electric Company and the Nuclear Power Corporation of India for six nuclear reactors in India and also related project financing,” it said.

[Source”cnbc”]

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