India-Japan-US trilateral stresses on respect for rules amid China's assertiveness

news
19 September 2017

External affairs minister Sushma Swaraj on Monday held a ministerial trilateral meeting with the United States secretary of state, Rex W Tillerson, and Japanese minister of foreign affairs Taro Kono during which the leaders of three nations exchanged views on maritime security, connectivity and proliferation issues.

They emphasised on the need for ensuring freedom of navigation, respect for international law and peaceful resolution of disputes amidst an aggressive China asserting its hegemony in the South China Sea challenging rights of other nations sharing the sea.

They also discussed connectivity initiatives and the need for basing them on universally-recognised international norms, prudent financing and respect for sovereignty and territorial integrity of nation states.

"The ministers emphasised the need for ensuring freedom of navigation, respect for international law and peaceful resolution of disputes," MEA spokesperson Raveesh Kumar said in a statement.

"On connectivity initiatives, the importance of basing them on universally recognised international norms, prudent financing and respect for sovereignty and territorial integrity was underlined," he added.

Swaraj also deplored North Korea's recent actions and stated that its proliferation linkages must be explored and those involved be held accountable, Kumar said.

The meeting was held in the backdrop of Doklam crisis and assertive Chinese behaviour as it looks to extend its influence into neighbouring countries through building inftrastructre.

China is in hot pursuit of territorial ambitions both on land and sea and is deep into disputes in both the South China Sea, the East China Sea as well as with neighbours in its south and its north.

Beijing has built up and militarised many of the islands and reefs all of South China Sea, where countries like Vietnam, Malaysia, the Philippines, Brunei and Taiwan have counter-claims.

On land, Beijing last month ended a 73-day standoff with India in Doklam area of the Sikkim sector after China's move to build a road in the border area.

Swaraj is scheduled to address the United Nations on 23 September. Besides, she will have a series of meetings including with Tunisian foreign minister Khemaies Jhinaoui, Bhutanese Prime Minister Tshering Tobgay as well as with Danish foreign minister Anders Samuelsen, Latvian foreign minister Edgars Rinkevics, and her Bolivian counterpart Fernando Huanacuni Mamani.

Swaraj will also participate in a high-level meeting on UN reforms, hosted and chaired by US President Donald Trump.

President Trump has backed a more democratic UN even as he warned that "bureaucracy" was holding the United Nations back, repeating his earlier criticism that the world body was a mere talk shop.

Trump also warned that as a founding member of the UN and its biggest financial contributor the United States wants a better return on its investment.

Trump will also take aim at "rogue regimes that threaten world stability and peace," singling out Pyongyang and Tehran during his half hour remarks and arguing responsible nations must step in to curb their behavior.





 search domain-b
  go