New Delhi: All eyes will be on the G20 Foreign Ministers meeting in New Delhi on March 2.
According to Indian Foreign Secretary Vinay Mohan Kwatra, “clear recommendation” is expected from the meeting on terrorism and issues related to counter-narcotics. Issues related to crypto could also figure.
” At tomorrow’s meeting, the larger challenge of counter-terrorism, counter-narcotics would be in focus with the Foreign Ministers, and we hope to get some clear recommendation coming out of that from that meeting,” Vinay Mohan Kwatra told a press conference here on March 1.
He said the Foreign Ministers’ meeting agenda has already been spelled out before everyone.
“Now you can decide from it what will be discussed and what won’t. I have already talked about it as much as I can, and can’t say any more on that topic. You can see to it and decide for yourself on the same,”
Kwatra said while answering questions.
The questioner had referred to the ongoing Russia-Ukraine war, which has raised the ‘question of instability in the world’. Similar to that the journalist asked, China’s behaviour has also posed the same instability question.
US Secretary of State Antony Blinken and Foreign Ministers of Russia and China Sergey Lavrov and Qin Gang will attend the meeting. On March 1, Dr S Jaishankar had a bilateral meeting with his Russian counterpart.
Chinese Foreign Minister Qin Gang’s visit to the meeting of G20 Foreign Ministers is also vital as he is expected to hold his first bilateral meeting with External Affairs Minister Dr S Jaishankar.
This will be Qin Gang’s first visit to India after he succeeded Foreign Minister and State Councillor Wang Yi in December 2022.
To a question on crypto, Foreign Secretary Vinay Mohan Kwatra said, “It is relatively new in that sense. It’s a FinTech issue because it’s essentially a financial product that emerges, which is centred in technology pretty much”.
Kwatra also said, “when you talk of countering terrorism, there are many sub-verticals that you need to deal with. Money laundering is one of them. Narco-financing is another of them, which, as you know, is one of the very old issues when you talk of terrorism going back to the early 90s”.
To a question on a possible bilateral meeting between Dr S Jaishankar and his Chinese counterpart Qin Gang, the Foreign Secretary said, ” it is expected that the External Affairs Minister will have meetings with his counterparts”.
Now what topics will be discussed in those meetings, it would be better if they come out once those meetings are over. It’s better if they come out at the appropriate time as it is up to the two Foreign Ministers to decide the issues they wish to focus on”.
To a question on the Russia-Ukraine conflict, Kwatra said, “In so far as India’s position relating to Russia-Ukraine conflict is concerned. Let me start with something which came later as a categorical statement, which was my Prime Minister (Narendra Modi’s) statement at Samarkand, which clearly said that this is “not the era of war”.
“If you back it up a bit, you will find that right from the start of the conflict in February last year, my Prime Minister, in his conversations with the global leadership, including the leadership from Russia, the leadership of Ukraine, leadership of other countries has clearly stated that dialogue and diplomacy is the way forward to resolve the conflict,” the Foreign Secretary said adding, “You converge the three and you find the contribution that India made in arriving at the Bali declaration consensus, which came out of the Bali declaration”.