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Narendra Modi to visit Ireland, US this week

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Photo: www.india.com

By NewsGram Staff-Writer

New Delhi: Prime Minister Narendra Modi has posted on Facebook that he will be visiting Ireland and the US from September 23-29.

Narendra-Modi6Modi will be will be going to Ireland on September 23 – in the first visit by an Indian prime minister in almost 60 years – and will hold talks with Taoiseach (Prime Minister) Enda Kenny.

“We hope to further develop strong people-to-people and economic ties with Ireland in the years to come. In Ireland, I will also interact with the Indian community,” he wrote.

On September 24, Modi will travel to the US. “This visit seeks to build on the substantial ground covered during my last visit to USA and President (Barack) Obama’s visit to India early this year.”

Noting he was going to the US at “a historic moment when the United Nations is celebrating its 70th anniversary”, he said that in July, he had written to 193 heads of governments outlining India’s vision for the UN agenda and reforms. “I am glad that leaders of several nations wrote back appreciating our vision.”

In New York City, Modi will address the UN Sustainable Development Summit for formal adoption of post-2015 new sustainable development agenda. “Coming from a culture that regards harmony as central to its ethos, I am glad to have an opportunity to address this forum. The new goals are closely aligned with India’s vision for sustainable development and our flagship programs for the same.”

Revealing he will also participate in a summit hosted by President Obama on peacekeeping, he noted that India has been one of the largest contributors to UN peacekeeping forces, with over 180,000 troops – more than from any other country.

“We are proud of our peacekeeping forces spread across the world, ensuring peace in difficult circumstances. I will pay homage to all those brave men and women who sacrificed their lives for peace. And I look forward to sharing my thoughts on how to make peacekeeping more effective,” he wrote.

Modi also said that India will host a summit of G-4 leaders in New York, where the main agenda would be the UNSC reforms and the UN’s 70th anniversary “is an appropriate moment for reform discussions to be accelerated,” as the General Assembly has finally adopted a document that would form the basis of formal discussions on this matter.

He said he will be meeting several world leaders and also hold interactions with leading investors and financial sector firms, including a working dinner where major Fortune-500 companies will be present to deliberate on investment opportunities in India. “We have been interacting with several American business leaders over the last year and the outcomes have been encouraging,” he said.

He also said that he will be visiting the West Coast on September 26-27 and participate in several programs. “It would be after a gap of almost 33 years that an Indian PM would be visiting the west coast – the home of startups, innovation and technology.”

Modi said he will also be part of a Townhall Q&A at the Facebook HQ along with Mark Zuckerberg, and this is an event “you shouldn’t miss”.

“I have already invited you all to share your questions through Facebook or the ‘Narendra Modi Mobile App.’ I will also see some recent technological innovations on the Google (Alphabet) campus and Tesla Motors. I will address a Renewable Energy Roundtable with USDOC and Stanford University.”

He said he is also enthusiastic about the ‘India-US Start-up Konnect’. “India is emerging as a hub of startups in a wide range of areas and we aspire to take this further. We want the world to see our innovation capabilities in the start-up sector. At this event, a group of Indian startups will showcase their innovations and forge partnerships with the vibrant American start-up industry. ”

In San Jose, Modi will interact with the Indian community on September 27. He said: “The Indian diaspora has left no stone unturned in strengthening India-USA ties. We are very proud of the accomplishments of our diaspora that has made immense contributions to both our societies.”

(With inputs from IANS)

Next Story

US Places Sanctions on Chechen Group, Russians, for Alleged Rights Abuses

The sanctions against the Terek Special Rapid Response Team in the Chechen Republic and the five were announced by the U.S. Treasury

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US, Chechen Group, Russians
FILE - The U.S. Treasury Building in Washington. VOA

The United States on Thursday imposed sanctions on a Chechen group and five people, including at least three Russians, over allegations of human rights abuses, including extrajudicial killings and the torture of LGBTI people.

The sanctions against the Terek Special Rapid Response Team in the Chechen Republic and the five were announced by the U.S. Treasury under the Magnitsky Act. They included suspects in the deaths of Russian whistle-blower Sergei Magnitsky and Russian opposition leader Boris Nemtsov.

The 2012 Magnitsky Act is named after the 37-year-old Russian auditor and imposes visa bans and asset freezes on officials linked to his death in prison 2009.

Those targeted on Thursday included Elena Anatolievna Trikulya and Gennady Vyacheslavovich Karlov, members of the Russian state’s Investigative Committee, who the U.S. said “participated in efforts to conceal the legal liability for the detention, abuse or death” of Magnitsky.

US, Sanctions, Chechen Group
United States on Thursday imposed sanctions on a Chechen group and five people ver allegations of human rights abuses, including extrajudicial killings and the torture of LGBTI people. Pixabay

Abuzayed Vismuradov, commander of the Terek Special Rapid Response Team in Chechnya, was accused of “being responsible for extrajudicial killings, torture or other gross violations of internationally recognized human rights” against those seeking to expose illegal activity by Russian government officials.

Detention, torture

The U.S. Treasury said Vismuradov was in charge of an operation that “illegally detained and tortured individuals on the basis of their actual or perceived LGBTI status.”

LGBTI is an acronym for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex.

The Treasury named Sergey Leonidovich Kossiev as being responsible for extrajudicial killings and torture as head of a penal colony in the Republic of Karelia. The fifth person, Ruslan Geremeyev, was accused of acting on behalf of the head of Chechen Republic, Ramzan Kadyrov, in a matter relating to extrajudicial killings and torture.

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The Treasury statement said Russian investigators had twice tried to bring charges against Geremeyev as the possible organizer of the 2015 slaying of Nemtsov, but were blocked by the head of the Investigative Committee.

Nemtsov, one of President Vladimir Putin’s most vocal critics, was shot and killed near the Kremlin in 2015.

In 2017, a court sentenced a man to 20 years in jail for his murder, but Nemtsov’s allies called the investigation a cover-up and said those who ordered the assassination remained at large.

The Russian Embassy in Washington said in a statement that U.S. sanctions under the Magnitsky Act “are at odds with the international law.” It said Russia would respond with “reciprocal measures.”

US, Sanctions, Chechen Group
Vismuradov was in charge of an operation that “illegally detained and tortured individuals on the basis of their actual or perceived LGBTI status.”. Pixabay

The Magnitsky sanctions have been a point of tension between Moscow and Washington, which are far apart on a wide range of global issues and U.S. allegations of Russian interference in U.S. elections.

Pompeo visit

The latest U.S. move followed a frosty visit to Russia this week by U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, who said Washington would brook no interference in the 2020 U.S. presidential election and wanted Moscow to take action to show there would be no repeat of its 2016 meddling.

Magnitsky was arrested and died after discovering a $230 million tax fraud scheme, according to U.S. authorities. His supporters say the Russian state killed him by denying him adequate medical care after he was imprisoned on tax evasion charges. The Kremlin denies the allegation.

The Treasury statement said officials in Chechnya had launched a series of purges of people they believed to be LGBTI and several were believed to have died as a result.

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“They have rounded up dozens of people on these grounds, some of whom have disappeared, with others returned to their families barely alive from beatings and with their captors outing them to families and encouraging the families to carry out so-called honor killings,” the statement said. (VOA)