New Delhi: The pressing issue of terrorism is expected to be discussed among other important topics at the 11th ASEM Summit this week in Mongolia where Vice President Hamid Ansari will lead the Indian delegation.
Ansari would travel to the Mongolian capital Ulaanbaatar on Thursday for the two-day summit from July 15 and would expound India’s stand on various issues at the meeting, said Preeti Saran, Secretary (East), Ministry of External Affairs.
The theme for the Summit is “20 Years of ASEM: Partnership for the Future through Connectivity” and India’s efforts would be inclined towards more successful outcomes and the building of a resilient and multidimensional web of interconnectivity between the two continents, she said.
Ansari will also hold bilateral meetings with a few other participating leaders on the sidelines of the Summit. During the visit, Ansari may also have an opportunity to meet the new Mongolian leadership after elections were held in the land-locked country in June this year, she said.
“We hope to have an opportunity to meet with the new leadership of Mongolia after elections there in June,” she said.
India’s relations with Mongolia was upgraded to strategic partnership during Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to the country last year.
On the ASEM Summit, Saran said since the theme of the meeting was connectivity, the Vice President will focus on it.
“We look at not just the vast geographical space between India and Europe and Asia. The Vice President will focus on all the broad aspects encompassing the theme of connectivity.
Of course, the current theme that is of huge concern to us as a country and that of the global community is terrorism. So I imagine that would definitely come up for discussion,” she said.
India joined ASEM in January 2007 and has taken part in four earlier summits. This year is unique for ASEM as it celebrates 20 years of its establishment in 1996.
ASEM comprises of 53 entities, 51 countries from Asia and Europe and two regional bodies, the European Union and the ASEAN Secretariat. It represents around 62.3 per cent of the world’s population, 57.2 per cent of the global GDP and almost 60 per cent of the world’s trade.
“It is a unique platform that serves to bridge the two continents of Asia and Europe for constructive partnership and exchange, under the three key pillars of political dialogue, economic collaboration and socio-cultural exchanges,” she said on ASEM.
Since this Summit is the first ever international event of such stature that Mongolia is hosting, the participation of Vice President signifies the importance that India attaches to its Strategic Partnership with Mongolia, she added.