US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo Wednesday said that India and the US should stand together in the defence of religious freedom rights for all and asserted that the world is worse off when they are compromised.
“India is the birthplace of four major world religions. Let’s stand up together in defence of religious freedom for all, let us speak out in favour of those rights, for whenever we do compromise those rights, the world is worse off,” Pompeo was quoted as saying by ANI.
Pompeo’s remarks come in the backdrop of a recently-released US State Department report on ‘International Religious Freedom’ that said mob attacks by violent extremist Hindu groups against the minority communities, particularly Muslims, are continuing in India.
He also commended India’s stand against terror, adding that he was pleased to see the United Nations Sanctions Committee (UNSC) designating Masood Azhar as global terrorist last month. “Just a few weeks ago, PM Narendra Modi called for all nations to fight terrorism. We are pleased to see United Nations Sanctions Committee designating Masood Azhar, last month,” Pompeo said.
He also hailed PM Narendra Modi and President Donald Trump, saying they are leaders who aren’t scared to take risks and the two countries are poised to do “incredible things together”. “India is more and more standing up on world stage and the US welcomes its assertiveness,” Pompeo said.
Pompeo also appreciated India for favouring Israel’s decision objecting to granting consultative status to a Palestinian group at the UN’s Economic and Social Council. “Recently India voted against Palestinian NGO that supported terrorism at UN and showed rewarding terrorism is wrong,” he said.