• Thursday, July 25, 2024

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US president Joe Biden to visit India in January? Here’s why

If his visit becomes a reality, it will be his second tour of India after September when he attended the G20 leaders’ summit in New Delhi.

Indian prime minister Narendra Modi meets US president Joe Biden on the sidelines of the G20 Summit, in New Delhi on Friday, September 8, 2023. (ANI Photo)

By: Shubham Ghosh

THE next Quad summit may take place in India around January 27 with New Delhi looking at hosting US president Joe Biden, Japanese prime minister Fumio Kishida and his Australian counterpart Anthony Albanese for the in-person deliberations, people familiar with the matter said on Friday (3).

India has already invited Biden to be the chief guest for the Republic Day celebrations on January 26 and the Quad summit could take place the next day if everything goes according to plan, they said. It is learnt that it could be inconvenient for India and the US if the summit is held after March and New Delhi has conveyed to three other member nations that it would like to host the Quad leaders in the later part of January.

Japan and Australia have sent preliminary communication to New Delhi that they are fine with the proposed date for the summit, the people cited above said, adding that Washington has also sent positive signals.

All the deliberations among the Quad countries are now focused on the plan to have the summit around January 27, they said.

In September, US ambassador to India Eric Garcetti said prime minister Narendra Modi invited Biden to be the chief guest for the Republic Day celebrations.

If Biden accepts the invitation, he will be the second US president to be the chief guest at the event after Barack Obama, who graced the occasion in 2015.

India’s invitation to Biden to be the chief guest for the Republic Day celebrations and hosting of the Quad summit may figure during US secretary of state Antony Blinken talks with his Indian interlocutors in New Delhi next week.

Blinken and US defence secretary Lloyd Austin are visiting India for the annual India-US ‘2+2’ foreign and defence ministerial dialogue.

The last Quad summit had taken place in Hiroshima on May 20 on the sidelines of the G7 summit. The Quad summit was originally scheduled to take place in Sydney on May 24. However it was decided to hold it in Hiroshima after Biden postponed his trip to Australia.

In their next summit, the Quad leaders are expected to bolster overall cooperation in the Indo-Pacific, a region that has been witnessing growing Chinese military assertiveness. In the Hiroshima summit, the Quad leaders unveiled a ‘Vision Statement’ titled ‘Enduring Partners for Indo-Pacific’ expressing their resolve to act as a “force for good” to find common solutions for region-wide benefit.

They also came out with a series of initiatives including in areas of clean energy supply chains, undersea cables and investments in strategic technologies.

(PTI)

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