External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj is all set to address the United Nations General Assembly session on Saturday in New York.
Swaraj is expected to speak on issues such as India-Pakistan relations, cross-border terrorism and the country’s long-pending demand for inclusion into the Security Council when she addresses the high-level UNGA at 7:15 PM (IST).
Swaraj’s appearance at the global forum holds a significance as India-Pakistan bilateral ties have hit a particularly rocky stretch in the aftermath of the brutal murder of a Border Security Force jawan in the Jammu region about 10 days ago.
India did not take the incident lightly, a sentiment that found reflection in Swaraj’s apparent snub to Pakistan Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly yesterday.
Earlier, she had delivered a scathing statement on terrorism with a finger that seemed firmly pointed at Pakistan. “The number of threats and incidents that endanger South Asia are on the rise. Terrorism remains the single-largest threat to peace and stability in our region, and indeed in the world. It is necessary that we eliminate the scourge of terrorism in all its forms, without any discrimination, and end the ecosystem of its support,” Ms Swaraj said in her address to the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation.
“I would like to stress that meetings, including high-level ones, can only be effective if expressions of resolve are translated into concrete action on the ground,” she added.
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Incidentally, India and Pakistan seemed to be on the path to reconciliation just a few weeks ago, when the government accepted a request for a meeting of External Affairs Ministers on the sidelines of the UNGA.