President Recep Tayyip Erdogan in India: From meeting with PM Narendra Modi to Turkey’s stand on Kashmir issue; here’s all you need to know

By: | Updated: May 1, 2017 8:41 AM

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan will meet President Pranab Mukherjee and Prime Minister Narendra Modi in New Delhi.

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Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan will meet President Pranab Mukherjee and Prime Minister Narendra Modi in New Delhi, according to reports. Erdogan had arrived yesterday. This is Erdogan’s first visit to India as the Turkish President, the report says. Notably, he had won a referendum on April 16 which gave him more executive powers as the President. Experts expect outcomes and bilateral cooperation to be strengthened in areas such as defence, counter-terrorism, information technology, space and investments in infrastructure projects, with Turkey famous for its prowess in the construction sector, according to The Indian Express report. There is also possibility of talks on a Comprehensive Economic Cooperation Agreement, apart from better air connectivity, the report says.

Here are key points of bilateral talks between India and Turkey scheduled to be held on Monday.

Apart from President Mukherjee and PM Modi, Erdogan will meet Vice-President M. Hamid Ansari today.

Economic ties, cooperation in the fight against terrorism and talk on Turkey’s support to India in its bid to become a member in the coveted Nuclear Supplier’s Group are expected to dominate the bilateral talks.

After a ceremonial reception at the Rashtrapati Bhawan on Monday, President Erdogan will also lay wreath at the Rajghat, MEA sources said, as per ANI report.

His official engagements also include a call on by External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj. He will also attend a Business Event and interact with industry captains.

During his stay, there will be also a conferment of the Honorary Degree on President Erdogan by the Jamia Milia Islamia University.

Erdogan had visited India in 2008, when he was the prime minister. After eleven years as the Prime Minister, he was elected President in 2014.

The Intelligence Bureau (IB) has directed security agencies to ensure that he be provided the highest security cover in the wake of threats from the ISIS. The IB has even demanded that his aircraft be guarded at all times during his stay in the capital. A special request to allow officers deployed for his personal security to carry weapons has also been placed.

Yesterday, in an interview, Erdogen had favoured India’s bid for membership of the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) besides that of Pakistan, saying India should not have objection to it. Turkey is not directly opposed to India’s NSG membership but has been maintaining that the powerful bloc should come out with a system to consider the entry of the countries which are not signatory to the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) as also supporting Pakistan’s case, diplomatic sources said, as per PTI report.

Erdogan had suggested a multilateral dialogue to resolve the Kashmir issue to ensure peace in the region. “We should not allow more casualties to occur (in Kashmir). By having a multilateral dialogue, (in which) we can be involved, we can seek ways to settle the issue once and for all,” he told WION news channel in an interview. The Turkish leader said that it is in the interest of India and Pakistan that they should resolve this issue and not leave it for the future generations who will have to suffer. “All around the world, there is no better option than keeping the channel of dialogue open. If we contribute towards global peace, we can get a very positive result,” he said, as per PTI report.

Erdogen had said India and Pakistan were both friends of Turkey and he wanted to help strengthen the dialogue process among the stakeholders for resolving the Kashmir issue which has been festering for the last 70 years, the PTI report said.

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