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Thursday, February 22, 2024

Need to democratise UNSC further: Rajnath to Africa

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Gandhinagar: The global order deserves to be democratised and it is necessary to make the UN Security Council more representative, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh said to his counterparts from African countries on Tuesday.

Rajnath Singh is hosting the Defence Ministers of African nations in the India-Africa Defence Dialogue being held here on the sidelines of India’s biggest ever five-day-long defence exhibition DefExpo 2022.

“I am sure that you also share our belief that the global world order deserves to be democratised further. The world’s multilateral forums should be reflective of the change in global realities,” said Singh.

“In this regard, it is necessary to make the UN Security Council more representative which will give it greater legitimacy, thereby sustaining a global order in which the principles of international peace, security and order are respected universally,” he added.

Singh said that India does not believe in a hierarchical world order where few countries are considered superior to others.

The Minister said that India’s international relations are guided by the very essence of human equality and dignity, which is a part of the country’s ancient ethos.

Rajnath also invited African countries to explore Indian defence equipment and technologies.

“A defence manufacturing ecosystem has been created in India which has the advantage of abundant technical manpower.

Our Indian Defence Industry can work with you to fulfil your defence requirements,” he said.

Showing India’s willingness to intensify ties with the African countries, Singh said that African priorities are also India’s priorities.

“Our Prime Minister had clearly stated that Africa will be at the top of our priorities. We will continue to intensify and deepen our engagements with Africa. India remains united with African countries in their quest for peace, security, stability, growth and prosperity,” he said.

“African priorities are our priorities. We appreciate the efforts made by African countries towards building a common African Peace and Security Architecture,” the Minister added.

He said that India’s partnership with Africa is centered on the ten guiding principles articulated by Prime Minister Narendra Modi during his address to the parliament of Uganda in 2018.

“We share a multi-faceted defence and security cooperation relationship. India remains committed to support your efforts to deal with challenges of conflict, terrorism and violent extremism. These endeavours foster inclusive and constructive collaboration in dealing with shared security concerns and address common challenges to peace and prosperity,” the Minister said.

Singh mentioned that India and African countries are important stakeholders in ensuring a safe and secure maritime environment, especially in the Indian Ocean Region.

“Over the years, India has contributed immensely to the United Nations peacekeeping operations in Africa. It is amongst the top three countries, contributing troops for UN peacekeeping, and has participated in most of the UN peacekeeping operations in the region,” the Minister said.

He said that India’s defence and security partnership with the African continent will continue to be guided by traditional Indian goodwill towards African people.

“India is steadfast in its commitment to provide support in all arenas to African countries, for fulfilling their aspirations for peace and stability in the region. India is willing to work together with African countries in the areas of mutual interest,” he said.

“We do not believe in making or becoming a client or satellite state, and so, when we partner any nation, it is on the basis of sovereign equality and mutual respect. Forging relations comes naturally to India, as we work towards mutual economic development,” the Minister added.

Singh also invoked the legacy of some African Freedom Fighters like Jomo Kenyatta, Patrice Lumumba, Kwame Nkrumah, Nelson Mandela, Sam Nujoma etc.

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