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Shri Sarbananda Sonowal visits Chabahar Port in Iran to Review work progress, New Delhi, 20 August 2022.

The Union Minister of Ports, Shipping & Waterways and Ayush, Shri Sarbananda Sonowal paid a visit to the Shahid Behestti port at Chabahar in Iran to review the progress in the development of the port today. In an effort to invigorate the potential of Chabahar port, the Union Minister, Sarbananda Sonowal also handed over Six mobile harbour cranes to Indian Ports Global Chabahar Free Trade Zone (IPGCFTZ) at the port today. The Union Minister was accompanied by the India’s Ambassador to Iran, Gaddam Dharmendra. Dr Ali Akbar Safaee, Deputy Minister and Managing Director of Ports and Maritime Organisation, Iran, led the Iranian delegation at the launch today.

Shri Sarbananda Sonowal and Dr Ali Akbar Safaee had a fruitful meeting on development of maritime and port cooperation between Iran and India. Both the delegation discussed the possibilities of trade & unlock trade potential between Central Asian countries with South Asian, ASEAN and even from Far East countries like Japan and Korea. The Union Minister, Shri Sarbananda Sonowal reiterated the role Chabahar port can play in reducing distance, time and cost. It was decided to form a joint technical committee for smooth functioning of the port. The meeting also addressed the future course of action towards development of the port.

Speaking on the occasion, the Union Minister, Shri Sarbananda Sonowal, said, “Our shared historical relationship has been the seedbed of Indo-Iranian bilateral relationship. The sustained engagement and all-round efforts in the preceding years provide an ideal platform for further expansion and deepening of the bilateral relation. India remains fully committed to develop the Chabahar port to realise the vision set during Indian PM Shri Narendra Modi ji’s visit to Iran in 2016.  The inauguration of the SIX mobile harbour cranes would act as a force multiplier for the operation of the Shahid Behesti Port and further fuel impetus to the development of the Chabahar port. The strategic role of Chabahar port to unlock trade potential in the regional trade between Central Asia, South Asia & Southeast Asia is huge. We are continuously working towards making the International North South Transport Corridor as the preferred route of trade between the two regions.”

Since India Ports Global Private Limited (IPGPL) assumed operations of Shahid Beheshti Port, it has handled over 4.8 million tons of bulk cargo. The trans-shipment of goods was from varied countries including Australia, Bangladesh, Brazil, Germany, Oman, Romania, Russia, Thailand, UAE, Ukraine and Uzbekistan. With close cooperation between India’s IGPL and Iranian stakeholders including Iran’s Port and Maritime Organisation, Iranian Customs Administration and the Chabahar Free Zone Authority, Shahid Behesti Port Authority & other stakeholders, the Port is likely to act as a catalyst to unlock the huge trade potential in the region. The meeting was also attended by Mr Sepahi, Provincial Deputy Governor and the Governor of Chabahar City, Mr Ebrahimi, Interim CEO of Chabahar Free Trade Zone Organisation among other senior officials from Ministry of Ports, Shipping & Waterways, Government of India, the Indian Embassy and the officials from Islamic Republic of Iran.

The Union Minister, Shri Sarbananda Sonowal is on a three day official tour to Iran and UAE where he is slated to visit Chabahar Port in Iran and Jebel Ali Port in UAE. The visit is aimed at strengthening the ties and maritime relationship between the two nations. The visit also intends to highlight the importance of Chabahar port as a gateway for Indian trade with Europe, Russia and CIS countries. Source: Press Information Bureau (PIB).

Shri Sarbananda Sonowal calls on Vice President of Iran, Mohammad Mokhber; reiterates strong commitment to Indo Iran Bilateral Relations, New Delhi, 22 August 2022.

Union Minister of Ports, Shipping & Waterways and Ayush, Shri Sarbananda Sonowal called on His Excellency, Vice President of Islamic Republic of Iran, Mohammad Mokhber at Tehran. The two leaders discussed about further bolstering the Indo-Iranian bilateral relations. The Vice President, who is Iran’s Special Envoy for relations with India, appreciated the visit of India’s Shipping Minister as it provides impetus to further the bilateral cooperation between the two countries. The development of Chabahar port would lead to increase in trade and shipment volume, the Vice President added. The Union Minister also underscored the importance for both sides to collaborate on further steps to be taken to make Chabahar port an instrument for regional growth in trade shipment.

Speaking after his visit to His Excellency, the Vice President of Iran, Shri Sarbananda Sonowal, said, “Extremely pleased to meet his Excellency, Vice President of Iran, Mr Mohammad Mokhber where we discussed ways & means to further strengthen & consolidate the vibrant Indo-Iranian bilateral relations. We continue to strengthen our dynamic relationship with Iran. India’s Prime Minister, Narendra Modi ji, has asked me to communicate about the highest-level commitment to further deepen & expand our relationship for a mutually beneficial one.”

Earlier, Shri Sonowal attended a Bilateral meeting with His Excellency, Minister of Roads & Urban Development, Islamic Republic of Iran, Rostam Ghasemi. On this occasion, both the countries signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on recognition of Certificates of Competency in Unlimited Voyages to help seafarers from both the countries as per the provisions of International Convention on Standards of Training, Certification and Watch Keeping for Seafarers (1978).

Shri Sarbananda Sonowal and Rostam Ghasemi had a fruitful bilateral meeting on deepening the Indo-Iranian relations. The signing of the MoU is aimed at smoothening the movement of seafarers from both the countries. The Union Minister reiterated the importance of the bilateral relationship between the two countries. The role of Chabahar as a trade multiplier for the region was highlighted by the Union Minister at the meeting as the potential of the port to act as a swift, economical trade conduit between Central Asia and South Asia, even Southeast Asia, remains to be tapped fully.

Since India Ports Global Private Limited (IPGPL) assumed operations of Shahid Beheshti Port, it has handled over 4.8 million tons of bulk cargo. With close cooperation between India’s IGPL and Iranian stakeholders including Iran’s Port and Maritime Organisation, Iranian Customs Administration and the Chabahar Free Zone Authority, Shahid Behesti Port Authority & other stakeholders, the Port is likely to act as a catalyst to unlock the huge trade potential in the region.

In 2020, India supplied 75000 tonnes of wheat to Afghanistan as part of humanitarian assistance programme as well as provided for 40,000 litres of Malathion 96% ULV pesticides to Iran via Chabahar port in a concerted effort to mitigate locust threat to agriculture & enhance food security in the region. In an effort to invigorate the potential of Chabahar port, the Union Minister commissioned Six mobile harbour cranes to Indian Ports Global Chabahar Free Trade Zone (IPGCFTZ).

Shri Sarbananda Sonowal is on a three days official tour to Iran. Following his Iran visit, the Minister will be on a day long official visit to UAE where he will pay a visit to Jebel Ali port and participate in Bilateral meetings as well as investors meet. Source: Press Information Bureau (PIB).


Union Agriculture Minister lays the foundation stone for Indo-Israel Centre of Excellence for Vegetables through video conferencing, New Delhi, 08 August 2022.

The Union Minister of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare, Shri Narendra Singh Tomar, laid the foundation stone of the Indo-Israel Centre of Excellence for Vegetables in Chandauli (Uttar Pradesh) through video conferencing.

Speaking on the occasion, Shri Tomar said that the Central and State Governments are working together all-round to upgrade Agriculture. “It is necessary for the educated youth to be oriented towards this in order to move forward the Agriculture sector more rapidly in the future,” he said. Shri Tomar expressed happiness that under the leadership of Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath, progress is being made in various sectors, including Agriculture, in Uttar Pradesh and the State is also contributing better in the development of the country. He also expressed happiness that the schemes of the Central Government are being implemented in Uttar Pradesh and the State has also made rapid strides in organic and natural farming. Expressing hope, the Union Agriculture Minister said that UP, in the coming times, will achieve a new dimension in the field of Agriculture. The way UP has been leading the way in the fields of cultural heritage and scientific knowledge, in the same way it will take the country further in the development of agriculture, he said.

Shri Tomar said that today is a historic day for the Chandauli region. “A new dimension is being added on the occasion of Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav. This Centre is the result of the efforts of the State Government. Its establishment will play an important role in the development of the district. Also, it will prove to be a revolutionary step in the field of Agriculture in the adjoining districts and districts of Bihar border also. Many new opportunities will be created for progress through Agriculture. Farmers will be able to get better yields by using the latest methods of farming,” he said.

Shri Tomar said that Agriculture should move forward continuously, and the quality of production should be at par with the global standards. “In this direction, technology application has to move forward. To attract future generations towards farming, Agriculture has to be rejuvenated. We all need to work seriously on moving towards remunerative crops, use of technology, Digital Agriculture Mission, taking advantage of FPOs and adopting natural and organic farming. Together we will move towards fulfilling our priority and obligations,” he said.

Shri Tomar hoped the establishment of the Indo-Israel Centre of Excellence for Vegetables will play an important role in the development of Chandauli district as well as Purvanchal region. “Here seeds and plants of improved vegetables will be cultivated and distributed to the farmers. Farmers can also sponsor the development of plants for themselves. Farmers will get a lot of benefit in increasing the production of vegetables. By using the latest methods of farming, farmers will be able to get better yield and also export vegetables. Nursery of other agricultural produce including vegetables will be prepared at this Centre of excellence to promote the Agriculture sector globally. This will not only benefit the farmers here, but will help the district be known globally in the field of vegetables and agriculture,” he said.

The Union Minister of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare said it is the intention of the Government that the leading district in the production of paddy and wheat can also emerge better in vegetable production as well. “The climate of Chandauli district, which is known as the rice bowl of UP, is suitable for setting up the Centre of Excellence for Vegetables. There are 9 agro-climatic zones in the State which are favourable for the cultivation of various horticultural crops throughout the year. Seedling production of tomato, pepper, brinjal, chilli, cucumber, tomato, pepper, brinjal, chilli and exotic vegetables is proposed to be done in the hi-tech climate-controlled greenhouse to be set up in the Centre of Excellence for Vegetables, while cultivation of cucumber, cauliflowers, baby corn, sweet corn and exotic vegetables is proposed in the open field. Along with micro-irrigation in the open, a trial demonstration of farming with fertigation and chemigation systems will be done. There will also be a demonstration of installation of seepage, sprinkler irrigation and other plastic culture applications,” he said.

The foundation stone laying programme was also addressed by Chandauli MP and Union Minister for Heavy Industries, Shri Mahendra Nath Pandey, UP Agriculture Minister Shri Surya Pratap Shahi, Minister of State for Horticulture, Shri Dinesh Pratap Singh and other public representatives.

The technology for the Centre is provided by Israeli experts under the India-Israel Action Plan (IIAP) with funds for building infrastructure for demonstration purposes from MIDH. Centres of Excellence (CoEs) are being set up in the States based on Israeli technologies. These Centres of Excellence act as demonstration and training centres for the latest technologies in the field of Horticulture. They also serve as a source of planting material for fruits and vegetables in protected cultivation. Source: Press Information Bureau (PIB).


Inauguration of India Corner at the National Library of Lebanon, Beirut, 16 August 2022.

Ambassador Dr Suhel Ajaz Khan & Lebanese Minister of Culture H.E. Judge Mohammad Mortada jointly inaugurated an India Corner at the National Library of Lebanon, Beirut on August 16, 2022. The Embassy donated more than 150 books for this purpose.

On this occasion, Dr Khan also presented to the Minister a copy of 1916 sketch of Indian Noble Laureate Poet Rabindranath Tagore by famous Lebanese artist, philosopher & poet Khalil Gibran, as a powerful symbol of strong cultural connect between India & Lebanon. Source: Embassy of India, Beirut.


India Invites Oman as Guest Country in G-20, Muscat, 14 August 2022.

India will assume the Presidency of the G-20 from 01 December 2022 to 30 November 2023.

Under its Presidency, India is expected to host over 200 G-20 meetings across the country, in addition to the G-20 Leaders' Summit at the Heads of State / Government level on 09-10 September 2023 in New Delhi.

As part of its Presidency of the G-20, India has extended a special invitation to the Sultanate of Oman to participate in the G-20 Summit and meetings as a Guest country. Other countries invited as Guests include Bangladesh, Egypt, Mauritius, Netherlands, Nigeria, Singapore, Spain, and UAE.

Ambassador of India to the Sultanate of Oman H.E. Amit Narang said that India’s invitation to Oman to participate as an esteemed Guest country during its G-20 Presidency is a mark of the special friendship between the two countries.  He noted that this reiterates Oman’s position as one of India’s foremost partners in the Gulf region and beyond and a testimony to the strategic and multidimensional relationship between both countries.

Ambassador Narang further noted that this will be an opportunity for the Sultanate of Oman to participate in the premier intergovernmental forum of the world’s major developed and developing economies, accounting for nearly 85% of global GDP, 75% of international trade and two-thirds of the world population. Oman’s participation in the meetings of the G-20 will also provide a useful platform to further deepen and strengthen the multifaceted cooperation between the Governments of India and Oman. Source: Embassy of India, Muscat.


Visit of External Affairs Minister to UAE for Joint Commission Meeting and Strategic Dialogue (August 31- September 02, 2022), New Delhi, 29 August 2022.

External Affairs Minister, Dr. S. Jaishankar, will be visiting UAE from 31 August - 02 September 2022 for co-chairing the 14th India-UAE Joint Commission Meeting (JCM) and 3rd India-UAE Strategic Dialogue with Foreign Minister of UAE H.H. Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan. These meetings will provide an opportunity to both the Ministers to review the entire spectrum of comprehensive strategic partnership between India and UAE and regional and global developments. During the visit EAM will also meet other UAE dignitaries.

There has been regular exchange of high-level interaction between India and UAE in 2022. Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi paid a visit to Abu Dhabi on 28 June 2022 and met UAE President H.H. Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan. Earlier, both leaders had also held a Virtual Summit on 18 February during which India-UAE Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (CEPA) was signed and a Vision Statement adopted. Both leaders also participated in the I2U2 Summit held virtually on 14 July.

Both India and UAE are committed to move forward in their partnership in diverse areas, including trade, investment, conventional and renewable energy, food security, health, skill development, education, culture, defence, space, consular issues and people-to-people ties. These areas were also discussed at official levels during the meetings of the Sub-Committees of the JCM held on 23-24 August 2022. Source: Ministry of External Affairs (MEA).


UNSC Open meeting on the situation in Gaza, India Statement, New York, 08 August 2022.

Thank you, Mr. President. May I also thank UN Special Coordinator Tor Wennesland for his briefing on the situation in Gaza.

2.    After a year of relative calm, tensions have risen again in Gaza. It is a matter of grave concern that the violence has not completely subsided despite hectic diplomatic parleys, development initiatives and efforts by the international community to hold the fragile ceasefire negotiated last May.

3.    The latest cycle has, once again, caused immense suffering and resulted in the loss of precious civilian lives, including children, and has left several injured and traumatized. We extend our deepest condolences to all those affected and their families. We support the diplomatic efforts of the UN and members of the international community, the countries in the region, especially Egypt, that has led to a ceasefire, to calm the situation further and seek to achieve durable peace. We urge all parties to de-escalate the situation to ensure that this does not spiral out of control.

4.    The recent developments can also challenge the incremental gains made in the last year in addressing Gaza’s humanitarian and economic situation. Therefore, the delivery of humanitarian assistance to the Palestinian civilian population in Gaza must continue to remain the focus of the international community.

5.    Even as this Council focuses on the cessation of hostilities in Gaza, we must also underline the urgent need for resuming dialogue between Israel and Palestine for a two-State solution. The absence of direct and meaningful negotiations between the two parties will only widen the trust deficit, which, in turn, increases the chances for similar escalations in the future.

6.    Long-term peace in Israel and Palestine can be achieved only through a negotiated two-state solution leading to the establishment of a sovereign, independent and viable State of Palestine living within secure and recognized borders, side by side, at peace with Israel, taking into consideration the legitimate security needs of Israel. India has consistently called for the resumption of direct peace negotiations between the parties, which, we believe, is the best path towards achieving the goal of a two-state solution. The UN and the international community must prioritize the revival of these negotiations.

I thank you. Source: Permanent Mission of India to the UN.

UNSC meeting on Yemen, Statement by Ambassador Ruchira Kamboj, Permanent Representative of India to the Nations, New York, 15 August 2022.

Thank you, Mr. President. I thank UN Special Envoy Hans Grundberg for his briefing and commend him for his efforts in securing the renewal of the truce for an additional two months. I also thank Ms. Ghada Mudawi from the UN Office for Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs for her briefing on the humanitarian situation in Yemen.

2.    We welcome the renewal of truce, which indeed comes as a relief to the people of Yemen, whose lives have been devastated by the seven-year-old conflict. The most tangible benefit of the truce is the significant reduction in the loss of innocent human lives due to an overall reduction in violence. The extended truce notwithstanding, recent months have witnessed some violations of the truce agreement, including the 24 July attack in Taiz that resulted in deaths and injuries to children. We condemn such attacks and urge all parties to adhere to the truce agreement.

3.    We are also concerned by the limited progress in the opening of roads in Taiz and other governorates. An understanding on opening roads through Taiz, which was also part of the Stockholm agreement, largely remains the unimplemented provision of the truce agreement. The people of Taiz have suffered immensely from the blockade of roads and they deserve to benefit from the current truce. Progress in opening of roads is an urgent humanitarian imperative. Also, the lopsided implementation of the truce agreement does not augur well for its long-term sustainability.

4.    Further, continued progress on the other provisions of the truce agreement is important. These should be further expanded, as they benefit the people of Yemen. Mutually acceptable solutions to issues related to their implementation such as the travel documents and proper use of fuel shipment revenues should be arrived at quickly.

Mr. President,

5.    It is also unfortunate that the current truce has not brought the expected humanitarian relief to many Yemenis, who are in dire need of such support. Actual delivery of aid had to be scaled down due to a lack of funds for the aid operations and the global inflation in commodity prices. We hope that with the increased funding received in recent weeks, the situation would be reversed soon.

6.    As a long-standing friend of Yemen, India has always prioritized the humanitarian needs of Yemen. India has extended humanitarian assistance to Yemen through the supply of medicines and food commodities in the past. Our hospitals have received thousands of Yemenis for medical treatment, even during the COVID pandemic. India has also exported more than 250,000 tons of wheat to Yemen, since April this year, to mitigate the adverse impact of supply changes in the global commodity markets on Yemen. We remain committed to do so in future as well.

7.    However, humanitarian aid alone will not solve the current crisis in Yemen. Urgent international support is also required to stabilize Yemen’s economy and prevent the deterioration of basic services.

8.    The truce, so far, has provided the longest period of relative calm in Yemen since the eruption of the conflict. This must be prolonged, consolidated and further expanded into a durable and lasting ceasefire. Such a ceasefire would build more confidence amongst the parties and provide a favourable environment for the political track.

9.    We have no doubt that only a robust and inclusive political solution, which meets the legitimate aspirations of all Yemenis, can end the conflict in Yemen. We urge the Yemeni parties to work towards such a solution and engage with the UN Special Envoy constructively in this regard.

I thank you. Source: Permanent Mission of India to the UN.

UNSC Open meeting on Question of Palestine, Statement by Ambassador Ruchira Kamboj Permanent Representative of India to the UN, New York, 25 August 2022.

Thank you, Mr. President. We are grateful to Tor Wennesland, General Philippe Lazzarini and Daniel Levy for their briefings. Thank you for that.

2. The escalation of hostilities earlier this month in the Gaza Strip has only exacerbated the dire humanitarian situation of the Gazan Palestinians, who have already been suffering, including due to the non-availability of funds for the UN Humanitarian Response Plan and the global increase in commodities prices. We hope that this situation will be addressed soon with increased donor funding.

3. We welcome the ceasefire in the Gaza Strip and urge the parties to abide by the ceasefire agreement strictly so that the ongoing intensive diplomatic efforts can strengthen them. In this context, we appreciate the efforts of the international community, especially the role of Egypt in this process. We also note Israel’s efforts to resume the movement of people from the Gaza Strip and the entry of humanitarian goods and fuel, following the ceasefire.

4. While we are focusing on strengthening the ceasefire, we must also continue to work together towards a political solution to effectively address the underlying drivers of the dire economic and humanitarian situation in the Gaza Strip.

5. Mr. President, we also remain deeply concerned by developments in the West Bank and Jerusalem. Violent attacks and the killing of civilians have continued during the reporting period. Acts of destruction and demolition are also continuing. Provocative action and rhetoric have again raised tensions around Jerusalem’s holy sites. The historical and legal status-quo at Jerusalem’s holy places must be respected and upheld. We are also gravely concerned about the acts of terror and incidents of violence in West Bank and Israel. There can be no justification for any act of violence committed against civilians. We have consistently advocated against all acts of violence, especially against women and children, and we reiterate our call for a complete cessation of violence.

6. We urge parties to refrain from unilateral measures that vitiate conditions necessary for promoting peace and instead focus on bridging the trust deficit. It is the international community’s collective responsibility to send a strong signal against any step preventing the possibility of a two-State solution.

7. Mr. President, UNRWA’s financial challenges are compounding every year. There is a significant risk of curtailment of UNRWA’s services if adequate funds are unavailable soon. The Agency’s services to millions of Palestinian refugees are crucial from the humanitarian and development perspective and contribute to overall stability in the region. As far as India is concerned and responding to UNRWA’s funding crisis, , we have increased our annual financial contribution to UNRWA. Since 2018, we have contributed US$ 20 million to the Agency’s program budget. We have also pledged US$ 5 million for this year, half of which has already been released. We encourage donors to consider stepping-up their contribution so as to help the Agency overcome its liquidity crisis this year.

Mr. President,

8. The situation again underscores the need for the immediate resumption of peace talks between Israel and Palestine. The absence of such direct negotiations is not conducive to securing long-term peace and will only increase the risk of recurrence and escalation of violence in Israel and Palestine. Therefore, an immediate necessity is an early return to the political dialogue process by launching credible direct negotiations.

9. India has consistently called for direct peace negotiations between Israel and Palestine towards a two-State solution, taking into account the legitimate aspirations of the Palestinian people for Statehood and Israel’s legitimate security concerns. The UN and the international community must prioritize the resumption of these negotiations.

10. In conclusion, Mr. President, I reaffirm India’s unwavering commitment to establishing a sovereign, independent and viable State of Palestine living within secure and recognized borders, side by side at peace with Israel, taking into account Israel’s legitimate security concerns. There is no other alternative to a negotiated two-State solution.

I thank you. Source: Permanent Mission of India to the UN.

UNSC briefing/consultations-Syria (political/humanitarian), Approved India remarks, New York, 29 August 2022.

I join others in thanking Special Envoy Geir O. Pedersen and ASG Msuya for their respective briefings. May I also extend the warmest welcome to the new Irish Ambassador on his first day in the Security Council.

2.    It is disappointing that the Small Body of the Constitutional Committee has not met this month. We had hoped that the three parties would engage constructively and purposefully, with a sense of compromise, to achieve credible progress in the meeting. Now, it seems that there is a question mark on the venue as well. 

3.    Mr. President, external factors have proved detrimental to the overall political process. The engagement so far has not been able to bridge the trust deficit amongst the key stakeholders. The cancellation of the ninth Constitutional Committee meeting in July 2022 has further reinforced this view. As the July negotiations for renewal of the cross-border mechanism on the humanitarian track have demonstrated entrenched vested positions by the primary stakeholders can be counter-productive in the long run and detrimental to the interests of millions of Syrians. We reiterate that it is for the Syrians to decide what is best for Syria and their own future.

 4.     The Special Envoy has been making efforts to engage with all sides and facilitate the political process, in line with Resolution 2254. We believe that his efforts should be supported, particularly his step-by-step approach. In this context, we welcome his recent visit to Moscow and meeting with Foreign Minister Lavrov. We hope that he will be able to visit Damascus soon and also engage with the Syrian Government. We continue to believe that the success of his efforts will also depend on actual relief to the people of Syria by an easing of measures affecting their daily lives. There is also an urgent need to scale up assistance and to ensure that humanitarian agencies receive the necessary funding to fully execute their plans.

 5.    India has been consistent in calling for support to the regional efforts in finding a long-term solution to the conflict. We have welcomed the progressive normalization of Syria’s relations with its Arab neighbours. Any acts compromising Syria’s sovereignty and territorial integrity will have a negative impact on the political process.

6.    On the security front, we remain concerned with the overall situation in Syria. As pointed out in the Secretary General’s 60-day report, violence has continued in the Idlib de-escalation area in the north-west of Syria, including through airstrikes, mutual shelling and clashes. There is an urgent need for serious attempts towards a comprehensive nationwide ceasefire in Syria. We believe that withdrawal of all foreign forces is essential toward realizing this objective.

7.    India has been consistently cautioning against the looming threat posed by a resurgence of terrorist groups in Syria. UN designated terrorist groups such as ISIL and Hayat Tahrir al-Sham continue to gain in strength not just in Syria, but in Iraq as well. The global fight against terrorism cannot and should not be compromised for narrow political gains. The credibility of the international community’s collective fight against terrorism can be strengthened only by ensuring accountability of terrorists and terrorist groups.

8.    Turning to the humanitarian dimension, the extension of the mandate for cross border humanitarian assistance in July 2022 was indeed a welcome development. The fact that the Council was able to adopt a Resolution on Syria is in itself a significant development. It is also important to note that elected Council members played an important bridging role in finding solutions towards long-running problems and conflicts.

9.    The resolution reassured nearly 4 million people in the northwest of Syria, 2.7 million of whom are IDPs, many of whom are women and children, that the world remained engaged with them and is concerned with their well-being. At the same time, we should not lose sight of the fact that more than 14.5 million people across Syria need humanitarian assistance in one form or the other, while essential food items and fuel continue to remain in short supply. Food insecurity has reached historic highs and an estimated 60% of the population is food insecure, per the UN, even as the conflict enters its twelfth year.

10.    India continues to call for enhanced and effective humanitarian assistance to all Syrians throughout the country without discrimination, politicization and preconditions. While cross-border operations are predictable and important, they cannot continue to exist in perpetuity. Concrete steps need to be taken to address the hurdles that are obstructing the functioning of cross line operations.

11.     Mr. President, humanitarian assistance cannot be a matter of political expediency. Linking humanitarian and developmental assistance with progress in the political process will only exacerbate humanitarian suffering. The international community also needs to constructively look at promoting projects, which will bring the much-needed jobs and economic opportunities for the Syrian people.

12.    In conclusion, Mr. President, let me underline India’s sustained commitment to extending developmental assistance and human resource development support to Syria. Our continued support to the people of Syria in their endeavour for seeking lasting peace and stability remains steadfast and unwavering.

I thank you. Source: Permanent Mission of India to the UN.

UNSC Briefing on UNSMIL/Libya, Statement by Ambassador Ruchira Kamboj, Permanent Representative of India to the UN, New York, 30 August 2022.

Mr. President,

I thank USG Rosemary DiCarlo for her briefing today.

2.    The political stalemate in Libya and the subsequent mobilization of armed groups are a matter of concern. As we keep repeating, there is no military or armed solution to the issues facing the country.  It is imperative therefore that all outstanding political issues are resolved peacefully by the parties concerned, keeping in mind the larger interests of the Libyan people. We hope that all parties will work together to maintain peace and stability in Libya.  

3.    The immediate priority for Libya is to hold Presidential and Parliamentary elections at the earliest in a free, fair, inclusive, and credible manner. In this regard, it is disappointing that consensus still eludes the parties on transitional measures governing the period leading to national elections. We hope that all outstanding issues will be resolved, and that an early consensus will be achieved on a constitutional basis for holding the elections.

4.    We remain concerned at the resurgence of terrorist activity in Libya, and we reiterate that terrorist groups and affiliated entities must not be allowed to operate unchallenged in Libya. Terrorism emanating from Libya is bound to have cascading effects on the Sahel region and it is therefore important for the international community to focus on it now and nip it in at this stage itself, so as to avoid its collateral consequences on the wider African continent.

Mr. President,

5.    The situation in Libya and the armed mobilizations once again call into attention the critical necessity of the full and complete withdrawal of foreign forces and mercenaries. We are yet to see signs of tangible progress on this front. Continued presence of foreign forces and mercenaries is detrimental to the peace and stability of the country and the region. There have been blatant violations of the arms embargo in Libya. In this regard, the UN Panel of Experts of the Libya Sanctions Committee in their recent report have categorically pointed out, and I quote “the remainder of the training provided by Turkey to the Government of National Unity Affiliated Forces is military or naval in nature and thus a violation of Paragraph 9 of UN Security Council Resolution 1970 (2011)” Unquote. Moreover, in the same report the UN Panel of Experts have also “noted the continuous presence of Turkish backed Syrian fighters in the Government of National Unity Affiliated Forces military camps in Tripoli.”

6.    Such blatant disregard for Security Council resolutions on Libya is a cause for serious concern. Such activities are also in violation of the Ceasefire Agreement agreed by the Libyan parties themselves in 2020 and we believe that we are seeing the adverse effects of such actions in the enduring political stalemate.

7.    We reiterate that the sovereignty, unity, and territorial integrity of Libya must be safeguarded. The political process needs to be fully Libyan-led and Libyan-owned with no imposition or external interference.

8.    India has traditionally enjoyed close and mutually beneficial bilateral ties with the Libyan people, and we remain committed to supporting Libya and the Libyan people in their endeavour to seek lasting peace and stability.

I thank you, Mr. President. Source: Permanent Mission of India to the UN.


OIC General Secretariat reiterates the call for the implementation of United Nations Security Council resolutions on Jammu and Kashmir, Jeddah, 05 August 2022.

August 5, 2022 marks the third anniversary of the illegal and unilateral actions taken in the Indian Illegally Occupied Jammu and Kashmir, which were followed by additional unlawful measures including illegal demographic changes. Such illegal actions can neither alter the disputed status of Jammu and Kashmir nor prejudice the legitimate right to self-determination of the Kashmiri people.

Recalling the resolutions of the Islamic Summit and Council of Foreign Ministers on Jammu and Kashmir, the General Secretariat reaffirms the OIC’s solidarity with the Kashmiri people in the realization of their inalienable right to self-determination. It calls for the respect of their fundamental freedoms and basic human rights and for the reversal of all illegal and unilateral measures taken on or after 5 August 2019.

The General Secretariat reiterates its call on the international community to take concrete steps for the resolution of the Jammu and Kashmir dispute in accordance with the relevant UN Security Council resolutions. Source: Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC).

Shri Sarbananda Sonowal embarks on an official visit to Iran / UAE to visit Chabahar Port and to participate in bilateral meetings with Iranian Ministers, New Delhi, 18 August 2022.

Union Minister of Ports, Shipping & Waterways and AYUSH Shri Sarbananda Sonowal embarked on an official visit to Iran and UAE beginning August 18, 2022. During his visit, Shri Sonowal will be visiting the Shahid Beheshti Port of Chabahar, Iran and UAE including Jebel Ali Port.  Chabahar Port is Country's first overseas port project. The development of Chabahar Port Project is a prestigious project of national importance.

Due to pandemic, there were less number of visits from India to Iran and vice-versa. This Ministerial visit will strengthen ties and maritime relationship between the two nations.  This visit will also highlight the importance of Chabahar as a gateway for Indian trade with Europe, Russia and CIS countries. The Minister will take part in bilateral meetings with the Ministers of Road & Urban Development and Health & Medical Education of the Government of the Islamic Republic of Iran.

During this visit, a Memorandum of Understanding concerning Mutual Recognition of Seafarer’s Certificates of Competency in Unlimited Voyages between the Government of India and the Government of the Islamic Republic of Iran is also proposed to be signed.

The Minister will also meet the Ambassadors of CIS countries based in Teheran. Shri Sarbananda Sonowal will also visit Jebel Ali Port, UAE and meet dais during the visit.  Round Table meetings with Heads of Shipping/Freight Companies in UAE will also be attended by him. Source: Press Information Bureau (PIB).

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