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Hassan Rouhani re-elected Iranian President । Prime Minister Modi congratulated him on his re-election । India, Palestine sign 5 MoUs including one on visa exemption for diplomatic passport holder । Agreements were signed after Prime Minister Modi’s meeting with President Abbas May 16 । Palestine President Mahmoud Abbas is on 4-day State visit to India beginning May 14 । Abbas is visiting India on the invitation of President Pranab Mukherjee । This is the fifth visit and the third State visit of President Abbas to India । Prime Minister Narendra Modi arrives in Colombo May 11 on his two-day visit to Sri Lanka । He was received by his Sri Lankan counterpart Ranil Wickramsinghe on his arrival at the Colombo airport । PM Modi is the chief guest at the International Vesak Day celebrations of Sri Lanka । India marks 19th National Technology Day । National Technology Day is marked to commemorate the anniversary of Pokhran nuclear tests of 1998 । On this day, Prime Minister Modi hails the then PM Vajpayee’s courage to conduct the nuclear tests । India launches GSAT-9 satetllite from Sriharikota । India to make Israeli rifles and small arms । Punj Lloyd and Israel Weapon Industries (IWI) collaborating in the venture । Trump to visit Israel and Saudi Arabia this month । This will be his first foreign visit as US President । India, Turkey signed three agreements including one between the Foreign Services Institute of India and the Diplomacy Academy of Turkey । Turkey President Recep Tayyip Erdogan calls on President Mukherjee, Vice President Ansari, PM Modi and EAM Sushma Swaraj during his State visit to India । The Turkish President, visiting from April 30-May 1, backs India in fight against terrorism । Turkey conveyed its support for India’s bid for membership of the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) । PM Modi expressed his gratitude on Turkey’s support । Indian Army celebrates 79th Armour Day । On 1 May 1938, Scinde Horse cavalry regiment was equipped with Vickers tanks and 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Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj called on him । Foreign Secretary S Jaishankar accompanied Sushma Swaraj when the latter called on the visiting Sri Lankan PM । India-Russia defence engagement will continue to grow, says Defence Minister Arun Jaitley । He was speaking at the 6th Moscow Conference on International Security in Moscow । India, Russia are celebrating 70 years of Diplomatic Relationship । China launches its first indigenous aircraft carrier । The new carrier will accommodate 36 aircraft and will be commissioned in 2020 after sea trials । It’s a 50000 ton platform with a ski jump deck modeled on Soviet carriers but has many design innovations । India, South Korea Sign Inter-Governmental MoU for Defence Industry Co-Operation in Shipbuilding । The MoU signed by Secretary (Defence Production), India, Ashok Kumar Gupta and Minister of Defence Acquisition and Programme Administration (DAPA), South Korea, Chang Myoung-Jin । The Inter-Governmental MoU was conceived under the overall 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accidentally shot down by a Saudi Patriot missile। US NSA Gen HR McMaster meets Prime Minister Modi in New Delhi । Gen McMaster also exchanged views on Indo-US relations with Indian counterpart Ajit Doval and Foreign Secretary S Jaishankar । Happy Easter । US drops its biggest 21,000 pound bomb on ISIS in Afghanistan April 13 । Designated GBU 43, the Mother of All Bombs is designed to hit deep caves and tunnels in hardy mountains । GBU 43 is the biggest non-nuclear bomb, carried by the US Air Force (USAF) and the British Royal Air Force (RAF) । White House Press Secretyary Sean Spricer confirmed the night bombing but there was no immediate word from Taliban । Spicer said the ISIS terroists were targeted as they used the caves and tunnels to hit the US forces । GBU 43 is a concussion bomb carrying an explosive charge of 8,500 kg, equal to 11 tons of TNT । India, Australia sign 6 MoUs including on Combating Terrorism and Civil Aviation Security । Agreements signed during Australian PM Malcolm Turnbull’s Visit to India April 10 । He calls on President Pranab Mukherjee, Vice President Hamid Ansari and Prime Minister Narendra Modi । This is the first ever visit of Turnbull after taking over as Australian PM in 2015 । The Australian PM along with his Indian counterpart took a Delhi metro ride to visit city-based Akshardham Temple । India, Bangladesh signed 22 agreements April 8 including key pacts on defence cooperation and civil nuclear cooperation । India announced an additional $4.5-billion concessional line of credit for infrastructure projects in Bangladesh, and another $500 million for Dhaka to procure defence equipment from New Delhi । A joint India-Bangladesh event saw both PMs honour the 1,661 Indian soldiers who sacrificed their lives during the 1971 war for Bangladesh’s independence । Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina arrives in New Delhi for 4-day State visit to India । Prime Minister Modi himself goes to the airport to greet the Bangladesh PM on her 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resigned to take over as Chief Minister of Goa recently। Hardeep Singh Puri appointed Chairman of the Research and Information System for Developing Countries । Mr Puri is former Indian Envoy to the UN in New York and Geneva । FBI investigating possible Russian interference in 2016 US presidential election, Director Comey confirms । He told House Intelligence Committee there is no evidence of President Obama ordering wiretap of Trump during the election campaign । President Trump has made several allegations against his predecessor, which the powerful heads of FBI and NSA have denied । Finance Minister Arun Jaitley assumes additional charge as Defence Minster । Jaitley replaces Manohar Parrikar who has moved to Goa to head the State’s Government as Chief Minster । BRAHMOS Extended Range (ER) missile successfully test-fired । Prime Minister greets CISF on its 48th Raising Day । INS Tillanchang Commissioned into Indian Navy । INS Tillanchang was commissioned by FOC-in-C Western Naval Command Vice Admiral Girish Luthra at Karwar । India Strategic salutes the humanity on this International Women’s Day । Civil Aviation Minister Ashok Gajapathi Raju dedicates first integrated heliport to the nation । Ms. DR Doley Barman appointed Director of Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel National Police Academy, Hyderabad । 1992 batch IFS officer Gopal Baglay appointed MEA Spokesperson । He replaces Vikas Swarup, who has been appointed Indian High Commissioner to Canada । Raytheon, Tata Advanced Systems to Co-produce Stinger Missile Components । Indian Navy Concludes First Contract under Buy and Make (Indian) Category । Contract signed between Nova Integrated Systems Ltd (NISL), a TASL subsidiary, and Indian Navy for procurement of Surface Surveillance Radars (SSRs) ।
May 22, 2017
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Dalai Lama’s visit to Arunachal Pradesh makes China see red

Nilova Roy Chaudhury April 2017
 

New Delhi. When The Dalai Lama, Tibetan Buddhism’s highest spiritual leader, chose to visit Arunachal Pradesh state of Northeast India, it was expected to be a landmark event for tens of thousands of his followers in the region and beyond.

While his followers were ecstatic to see their “living God,” the Dalai Lama’s visit to Arunachal has sparked heightened diplomatic tensions between India and China, with Beijing threatening “serious” consequences and New Delhi asserting that the visit was an internal affair of India.

Nonetheless, India went out of the way to say that the visit was religious with no political overtones against China.

But as expected, a belligerent China, which is supporting Pakistan-based ISI-sponsored terrorists against India, stepped up its rhetoric against New Delhi and severely criticised the Dalai Lama also.

Kiren Rijiju, India’s Minister of State for Home Affairs, who is an MP from Arunachal Pradesh, said no political motive should be attributed to Dalai Lama’s trip. “India has always been non-interfering in the neighbours’ internal affairs,” he said. “We expect the same from our neighbours.”

“When Dalai Lamaji is in Arunachal Pradesh, he will be confined only to religious matters. He is not there to make any political statement and he is not there with any political motive,” Rijiju said April 4, when the week-long visit started.

Notably China, which has territorial disputes with nearly all its neighbours and is now trying to annex even the South China Sea, has also claimed Arunachal Pradesh.

A day after the Dalai Lama, Tibetan Buddhism’s highest spiritual leader, left Arunachal Pradesh, China on April 12 warned India that the visit would have a “negative impact” on resolving the border dispute. Beijing also accused New Delhi of violating its commitment on the Tibet issue.

Spewing venom, the Chinese foreign ministry said that Beijing would take “further action” to safeguard its territorial sovereignty and criticised what it called “provocative” statements of the Tibetan spiritual leader and Arunachal Chief Minister Pema Khandu, who said the state shared its border with Tibet, and not with China.

Chinese foreign ministry spokesperson Lu Kang said their “provocative” statements “exceeded the scope of religious activities” as stated by India.
Lu said despite China’s objection, India insisted on arranging the Dalai Lama’s visit “in the disputed areas of the eastern section of the China-India boundary.”

Rijiju, who travelled to Arunachal Pradesh April 5 to meet the Dalai Lama, said India had never questioned China’s sovereignty and “has respectfully adhered to the one-China policy”.

“So we expect that China also should not interfere in our internal matters,” he said.

“No artificial controversy should be created around his present visit,” Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) spokesman Gopal Baglay said. “The Dalai Lama is a revered religious leader who is deeply respected by the Indian people” and has visited Arunachal Pradesh on six earlier occasions.”

The Chinese Foreign Ministry, in fact, reacted more sharply than usual even before the visit began, saying in a statement that “The 14th Dalai Lama is an anti-China separatist who has long lived in exile following a failed armed rebellion by the reactionary group of high-ranking feudal serf owners in Tibet in March 1959.”

Significantly, India has also been angry over China’s persistent opposition to India’s efforts to join the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) and refusal to get Masood Azhar, head of the ISI-sponsored Jaish-e-Mohammed proscribed as an international terrorist at the UN.

Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Geng Shuang said China was strictly opposed to the visit. Geng said India knew the sensitivity of the border issue between both countries and allowing the Dalai Lama to visit Arunachal Pradesh would damage its ties with China.

Foreign Secretary Jaishankar addressed the issue clearly when he said, although in a different context, that the “CPEC (China Pakistan Economic Corridor) violates Indian sovereignty because it runs through Pakistan-occupied Kashmir (PoK)”

“Therefore since they (China) are a country which has been very sensitive to sovereignty concerns, we would like to see what proposal anybody has in this regard. The issue for us is a sovereignty issue,” Jaishankar categorically stated.

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