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SOURCE: PTI

External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar has arrived in New York for the high-level UN General Assembly session, with a packed diplomatic week ahead that will include more than 50 official engagements including bilateral, plurilateral and multilateral meetings.

Mr Jaishankar arrived in New York Sunday to participate in the high-level 77th session of the UN General Assembly, which kick-starts September 20 with the opening of the General Debate.

“#IndiaAtUNGA. Delighted to welcome our External Affairs Minister @DrSJaishankar who is now here to attend the 77th Session of the @UN General Assembly #UNGA. He will co-host & participate in several bilateral, plurilateral & multilateral meetings during this hectic week,” India’s Permanent Representative to the UN Ambassador Ruchira Kamboj said in a tweet.

Counter-terrorism, peacekeeping, reformed multilateralism, climate action and equitable access to COVID19 vaccines will be among the key focus areas for India during the high-level UN General Assembly session that begins this week here.

Mr Jaishankar will address world leaders from the UNGA podium on September 24, after a packed week of more than 50 official engagements including bilateral, plurilateral and multilateral meetings at the high-level session and on the sidelines.

His first day of engagements will include several bilateral meetings, including with counterparts from Albania, Malta, Egypt and Indonesia as well as President of the 77th UNGA Session Csaba Korosi.

He will also headline the France–India–UAE trilateral.

India’s Permanent Mission to the UN had said in a video posted on Twitter that the five S’s – Samman (Respect), Samvad (Dialogue), Sahyog (Cooperation), Shanti (Peace) and Samriddhi (Prosperity) – set out by Prime Minister Narendra Modi will be India’s “guiding light” in its approach to the 77th session of the General Assembly.

It said India will continue to showcase commitments and achievements in women-led development, particularly women’s leadership and political participation at the grassroots level, attach greater prominence to issues relating to counter-terrorism and engage substantively in matters relating to peacekeeping as a major troop contributing country.

It will also focus on reformed multilateralism, commitment to climate action, equitable, affordable access to vaccines and strengthen engagement with fellow developing countries through the India-UN Development Partnership Fund and IBSA Fund in the spirit of South-South cooperation.

“India’s priorities during 77th UNGA will also be guided by its core foreign policy objectives, including supporting and enhancing overall domestic socio-economic growth and strengthening security in its immediate neighborhood, and leading collective global action, in line with the vision” of Modi, the video said.

Mr Jaishankar’s US visit from September 18-28 will also include a trip to Washington DC after the UNGA session. While in New York, he will meet with UN Secretary General António Guterres.

The Ministry of External Affairs said in a statement that in keeping with India’s strong commitment to reformed multilateralism, Jaishankar will be hosting a Ministerial meeting of the G4 (India, Brazil, Japan, Germany), as well as participate at the High Level Meeting of the L.69 Group on “Reinvigorating Multilateralism and Achieving Comprehensive Reform of the UN Security Council”.

The L.69 Group consists of developing countries from Asia, Africa, Latin America, Caribbean and Small Island Developing States, focused on reforms of the UN Security Council.

During the visit, he would also participate in plurilateral meetings of the Quad, IBSA, BRICS, India – Presidency Pro Tempore CELAC, India-CARICOM and other trilateral formats, such as India-France-Australia, India-France-UAE and India-Indonesia-Australia. He will also have bilateral meetings with Foreign Ministers of the G20 and UNSC member states, amongst others.

Commemorating and showcasing ‘Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav’, he would address a special event “India@75: Showcasing India UN Partnership in Action” on September 24, which would highlight India’s development journey and its contributions to South-South Cooperation.

The event is expected to be addressed by the President of the 77th UNGA, along with Foreign Ministers of several member states, and UNDP Administrator Achim Steiner.

In Washington DC from September 25-28 for bilateral meetings with US interlocutors, Jaishankar will hold discussions with his counterpart Secretary of State Antony Blinken; senior members of the US Administration, US business leaders and interaction with the Indian community.

The “visit would enable a high-level review of the multifaceted bilateral agenda and strengthen cooperation on regional and global issues to further consolidate the India-US strategic partnership.” India’s current two-year tenure at the UN Security Council ends in December this year, when India will be President of the Council.