India rejects China’s view that Pakistan should not be raised at BRICS

India on Friday rejected China’s suggestion that it should not raise concerns over Pakistan’s links with cross-border terrorism at the BRICS summit next week to be attended by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

“Your intervention or any leader’s intervention is that leader’s intervention…So you are free to speak what you want at the conference,” External Affairs spokesperson Raveesh Kumar told a media briefing when asked about remarks by his Chinese counterpart that it would not be appropriate for India to discuss its concerns over Pakistan on terrorism at the summit.

He was asked whether it was proper on the part of the host country to suggest to a member country as to what it should not raise at a summit.

However, Kumar said he would not like to pre-empt what the document of the summit would say on the subject, saying it is a matter of consensus.

Asked whether the issue of terrorism and Pakistan would be a topic of discussion, he said it has not been finalised. “We will not be able to share what is in the document and the same applies to discussions with leaders.”

Asked whether the Doklam issue that triggered tensions between the two countries could come up in discussions with Chinese President Xi Jinping on the sidelines of the summit, he said that schedule of bilateral discussion with leaders has still not been finalised.

Kumar was speaking at a special media briefing of the ministry to give details of Modi’s visit to China to attend the ninth BRICS summit in Xiamen city from September 3-5.

Giving details about the summit, Kumar said Modi will arrive in China on September 3 and attend the BRICS restricted session and its plenary session on September 4.

He said the restricted session is expected to discuss the global economic situation, international economic governance, national security and development and international and regional issues.

Kumar said the plenary session will discuss the practical cooperation for common development, people-to-people exchanges, cultural cooperation and institution building.

In the evening, the BRICS leaders will attend a cultural festival and an exhibition, followed by a meeting with the BRICS business council.

He said later four documents are expected to be signed at the summit – BRICS action agenda for economic and trade development, BRICS action agenda on innovative development, strategic framework for BRICS custom cooperation and MOU between BRICS business council and New Development Bank.

On the fourth evening, the BRICS leaders will be joined by leaders of the five guest countries for a welcome. The guest countries are Thailand, Mexico, Guinea, Egypt and Tajikistan.

On September 5, there will be BRICS emerging markets-developing countries dialogue, which the spokesperson said is an opportunity for BRICS member countries to exchange views with the developing world and build broader partnership for development.

Kumar said the Prime Minister will leave for Myanmar on September 5 afternoon on the second leg of his visit.

The five BRICS countries – Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa – are five major emerging economies and comprise 42 percent of world’s population, have 23 percent of global GDP and 17 percent share in the world trade.

The theme of ninth BRICS summit is `Stronger Partnership for a Brighter Future’.

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