India committed to peaceful resolution of disputes: Jaishankar at Quad meet

New Delhi (NVI): India is committed to respect for territorial integrity and sovereignty and peaceful resolution of disputes, External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar said today in his opening remarks at the second Quad Ministerial Meeting that began in Tokyo.

The EAM’s remarks were in an indirect reference to India’s border dispute with China at Line of Actual Control (LAC) in Ladakh.

“We remain committed to upholding the rules-based international order, underpinned by the rule of law, transparency, freedom of navigation in the international seas, respect for territorial integrity and sovereignty and peaceful resolution of disputes,” Jaishankar said while also referring to the need for a free, open and inclusive Indo-Pacific.

“As vibrant and pluralistic democracies with shared values, our nations have collectively affirmed the importance of maintaining a free, open and inclusive Indo-Pacific.” he said.

Indo-Pacific is at the heart of the second Australia-India-Japan-United States Consultations on regional and global issues of common interest. EAM Jaishankar reached Tokyo today for the crucial meeting and is expected to clear India’s stand on the LAC stand-off with China and hold discussions with other parties on Indo-Pacific.

In today’s meeting, the Quad members will lead a regional initiative called “Free and Open Indo-Pacific” aimed at countering China’s growing assertiveness in the region.

In his opening remarks, Jaishankar said that as India assumes membership of the UN Security Council next year, it looks forward to seeking collective solutions to global challenges, including global recovery from the pandemic and reform of multilateral institutions.

Jaishankar further said that the objective of QUAD group of nations remains advancing the security and the economic interests of all countries having legitimate and vital interests in the region.

“It is a matter of satisfaction that the Indo-Pacific concept has gained increasingly wider acceptance. The Indo-Pacific Ocean’s Initiative that we tabled at the East Asia Summit last year is a development with considerable promise in that context,” he said.

In addition to this, the EAM said that he looks forward to discussions on important issues such as connectivity and infrastructure development, security including counter-terrorism; cyber and maritime security; and the stability and prosperity in the region.

Earlier today, the Foreign Minister also called on Japan’s new Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga along with other Quad Foreign Ministers.