BRICS Summit: India, Russia stress common stand on terror

The Prime Minister not only announced a slew of high-value defence deals with Russia, but he also appreciated Russia’s understanding and support for India’s actions to fight cross-border terrorism.

Written by Shubhajit Roy | Benaulim (goa) | Updated: October 16, 2016 11:38 am
brics, brics summit, Narendra Modi, vlamidir putin, Narendra Modi vlamidir putin, india russia, russia, russia pakistan, russia pakistan military exercise, india news Russian President Vladimir Putin (L) and Prime Minister Narendra Modi attend an exchange of agreements event after the India-Russia Annual Summit in Benaulim, in Goa. (Reuters)

Inside the white tent on the rear lawns of the Taj Exotica hotel, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said in Russian, “stariya droog luchhey novikh dhwukh (an old friend is better than two new ones)”, and President Vladimir Putin smiled and officials clapped. The message was not lost on anyone.

For, three weeks ago, Russia had conducted its first-ever military exercise with Pakistan, days after the terrorist attack in Uri, in which 19 Indian soldiers were killed. India had conveyed its concerns about the joint exercises at least twice over the last few weeks.

But on Saturday afternoon, after two hours of talks between Prime Minister Modi and President Putin, there were no signs of disappointment on the Indian side.

Click here for LIVE updates from the BRICS Summit 2016

The Prime Minister not only announced a slew of high-value defence deals with Russia, but he also appreciated Russia’s understanding and support for India’s actions to fight cross-border terrorism. This was a clear reference to the surgical strikes across the Line of Control in Pakistan-occupied Kashmir conducted by India on September 29, which New Delhi has described as “counter-terrorist operations”.

“Russia’s clear stand on the need to combat terrorism mirrors our own. We deeply appreciate Russia’s understanding and support of our actions to fight cross-border terrorism, that threatens our entire region. We both affirmed the need for zero tolerance in dealing with terrorists and their supporters,” Modi said, as Putin listened.

Putin, who spoke for about seven minutes, made a reference to the “fight against terrorism” at the fag end of his statement. “It goes without saying that we continue our substantive dialogue on the entire international agenda, where India’s and Russia’s stances are very close or matching. One of our priority issues is combating terrorism together,” he said.

The joint statement indicated the “commonality of positions”, Foreign Secretary S Jaishankar said, as he read out excerpts during the post-talks briefing. The statement said that the leaders strongly condemned terrorism in all its forms and manifestations, and emphasised the necessity of comprehensive international collaboration in order to ensure its eradication.

“India and Russia recognise the threat posed by terrorism, and believe that the full implementation of the relevant UNSC resolutions, the UN Global Counter-Terrorism Strategy without application of any double standards or selectivity will be instrumental in countering this challenge,” the statement said, alluding to the UNSCR 1267 sanctions committee, which proscribes Lashkar-e-Toiba and Jaish-e-Mohammad.

This statement also indicated Russia’s support to the listing of JeM chief Masood Azhar, which has been put on technical hold by China.

“They stressed the need to deny safe havens to terrorists and the importance of countering the spread of terrorist ideology as well as radicalisation leading to terrorism, stopping recruitment, preventing travel of terrorists and foreign terrorist fighters, strengthening border management and having effective legal assistance and extradition arrangements. Furthermore, stressing the need to have a strong international legal regime built on the principle of ‘zero tolerance for direct or indirect support of terrorism’, both sides called upon the international community to make sincere efforts towards the earliest conclusion of the Comprehensive Convention on International Terrorism (CCIT),” the statement said.

National Security Advisor Ajit Doval has urged his BRICS counterparts to support the adoption of the CCIT.

Jaishankar, while providing a flavour of the discussions between Modi and Putin, said, “The restricted talks (which took place between the two leaders, accompanied by their close aides and interpreters) did cover Uri and support that Russia has given. The Indian side expressed their appreciation for the unequivocal support, and on their position on terrorism.” The two leaders, he said, were going to have detailed talks on the issue over lunch.

“We are very satisfied with the (Russian) response,” he said, talking about Uri and the post-Uri actions. He also pointed out that the two countries have “longstanding mutual trust” on issues of “core interests”. On whether the Russian president expressed support for the surgical strikes, the foreign secretary said, “If you put 2 plus 2 together, you will get the desired number.”

Jaishankar, when asked about the military ties between Russia and Pakistan, said, “We trust Russia completely, Russia will not do anything which is against India’s interest. Russia understands India’s interests, and there was complete meeting of minds on this.” Pressed again, he said, “I am talking about the important relationship here, that between India and Russia.”

The two sides moved on a range of areas, and signed 16 agreements. They signed defence deals including the purchase of missile systems and frigates, and joint production of helicopters. India will buy S-400 Triumf air defence systems at a cost of over $ 5 billion, and the two countries will collaborate in making four state-of-the-art frigates, besides setting up a joint production facility for Kamov helicopters. The other important deal is for four Admiral Grigorovich-class (Project 11356) guided-missile stealth frigates.

The two leaders also dedicated Unit 2 of the Kudankulum nuclear power plant, and witnessed the foundation-laying of its Units 3 and 4. The remaining deals covered trade and investment, hydrocarbons, space and smart cities.

Modi, who gave a 10-minute statement on the talks, said, once again with a comment in Russian, “Indiayi Russia — rooka ab rookoo wa stevtaloy badushiya (India and Russia — together to a bright future).”

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    Amit
    Oct 16, 2016 at 4:55 am
    India took such action that even the stan does not complain of.
    Reply
    1. A
      Amit
      Oct 16, 2016 at 4:58 am
      Muslims are themselves bu tchers of the worst kind, everyday ra ping and kil ling hapless Hindus
      Reply
      1. B
        Bijan Mohanty
        Oct 16, 2016 at 7:15 am
        Unlike the over stretched optimism by the press fed by Govt. PR machinery, the relation between India and Russia are under stress and Putin allegedly refused to name stan as terror sponsor despite Modi's sugar coated coaxings.
        Reply
        1. B
          Bijan Mohanty
          Oct 16, 2016 at 8:47 am
          You only think India as a rising super power when we depend on everything from needle to Computers on China and our economy is in a complete mess. Rising superpower as described by TV anchors !!!
          Reply
          1. B
            Bijan Mohanty
            Oct 16, 2016 at 7:16 am
            Your comments are out of context and out of topic.
            Reply
            1. M
              Musalaiah
              Oct 16, 2016 at 6:22 am
              Amit cool .. we should not hurt other's religion or sentiments. That is greatness of INDIA. Most of the HINDUS will repsect all GODS like SHIRDI SAI said SABKA MALIK EEAK (Baba from MUslim, Akbar is from Muslim). but it is unfortunate some (not all) narrow minded muslims not having such spirit and misleading muslim people. We all humans..Please we all will die (mortals). Be happy and make others happy and die
              Reply
              1. M
                Musalaiah
                Oct 16, 2016 at 6:26 am
                In addition to it ..I found as HINDU ..some (not all) HINDUS also short tempered and misleading people. but the truth is both are wrong. and World wide most extremism is from Muslim..I am sorry if any one hurt ..This is fact /truth we must know as information.
                Reply
                1. I
                  Imso
                  Oct 16, 2016 at 3:16 am
                  India spending billions in buying defense equipment to defend itself from stan, what is this says about the 1.2 Billion Indians, and also what will this do to support the poor people of India.
                  Reply
                  1. G
                    George Cruz
                    Oct 17, 2016 at 2:08 am
                    The real facts are that the PM Modi is a charismatic leader. a capable manager, an excellent team player, has convinced the foreign business leaders that India is the place to invest, move manufacturing to India with highly educated work force at lower cost using "make in India" scheme which has already created millions of jobs, and also has convinced the BRIC leaders that the Islamic stan is the epic center of global terror. The truth is that the cross border terrorism has cost India dearly in terms of human lives and monies over the last 65 years of congress rule and the BJP/Modi has determined to put an end to it. The BJP/Modi's multi throng approach to contain/constrain/terminate the stan terror using the strategic "surgical strikes in the POK, terminate all business deals with stan, and to highlight to the world that stan has nothing to export other than terror/killing/death/destruction.
                    Reply
                    1. A
                      autonomous
                      Oct 16, 2016 at 8:02 am
                      India as a rising super power so we cant expect every nation to corner stan every time ,if we want to take action against stan army and terrorist we should first make the first step to eliminate them then only all other country follows and stand with India. Only condemning stan for name sake will not result in any solution for India even U.S, China will do that perfectly well, Russia has made S 400 deal with India and fgfa in progress.Cant these show one Russia's favourable status to India.Logicaly too stan will not be as India to Russia because stan are only slaves.
                      Reply
                      1. A
                        autonomous
                        Oct 16, 2016 at 8:20 am
                        Rightly said N.Korea is also been discussed by all world powers for their hydrogen bomb testing and how to tackle them, it is not because world is afraid of N.Korean army but world cares of the innocent civilians,kids,and women who will fall as casualties during war and its neighbour S.Korea. And in India not only Muslims Hindus too got killed there in that riot, there are losses in both sides don't only raise your voice only if a loss happens to one community be neutral and look at the situation "" stan Minorities(hindus,sikhs,christians,parsis) are becoming endangered "" but there is still no one in India to raise the issue in U.N about this.And some hypocrites like you only stand up for one community loss only.
                        Reply
                        1. S
                          subir
                          Oct 16, 2016 at 1:45 am
                          Why India buying all these expensive war equipment from Russia byping offset clauses and significant transfer of technologies ??? What's the point of India eternally remaining as someone who joins only nuts and bolts in the name of local embling ????
                          Reply
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