Sao Paulo [Brazil], August 21 (ANI): Recalling India's successful evacuation of its citizens from the war zone during the Russia-Ukraine conflict under Operation Ganga, External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar said that India is capable of big things.
"As we celebrate the 75th year of Independence, the mood in the country is very optimistic. This is an India which is capable of big things... We brought out a large number of people through an organised effort during the Ukraine-Russia conflict," Jaishankar said at an Indian community event in Sao Paulo.
While attending the event, Jaishankar said that China has disregarded the border pacts and the Galwan Valley standoff has been casting a shadow as ties between the two nations continue to go through a very difficult phase.
Jaishankar met the Indian community in Brazil's Sao Paulo on the first leg of a three-nation visit. He will also visit Paraguay and Argentina. "We have agreements with China going back to the 1990s which prohibits bringing mass troops in the border area. They have disregarded that. You know what happened in the Galwan valley. That problem has not been resolved and that has been clearly casting a shadow."
Speaking on the current border situation between India and China, Jaishankar said that a relationship cannot be a one-way street and mutual respect has to be there in order to sustain it. "They are our neighbours. Everybody wants to get along with their neighbour. In personal life and country-wise as well. But everybody wants to get along with on reasonable terms. I must respect you. You must respect me."
"So from our point of view, we have been very clear that we have to build the relationship and there has to be mutual respect. Each one will have their interests and we need to be sensitive to what the concerns are for others for a relationship to be built."
India and China have been engaged in a standoff since April-May 2020 over the transgressions by the Chinese Army in multiple areas including the Finger Area, Galwan Valley, Hot springs, and Kongrung Nala. The situation worsened after violent clashes with Chinese troops in Galwan Valley in June 2020.
"Relationships are a two-way street. A lasting relationship cannot be a one-way street. We need that mutual respect and mutual sensitivity. Right now it is no secret we are going through a very difficult phase," Jaishankar added.
Jaishankar also thanked the Indian community for serving as an effective bridge between Brazil and India. "India-Brazil ties are defined by good sentiment, great goodwill and increasing cooperation. Thank the Indian community for serving as an effective bridge," he added.
Taking to Twitter, EAM Jaishankar said, "Began my Latin American visit by meeting the Indian community in Sao Paulo. Shared with them the progress and optimism as India completes 75 years of Independence."
During his visit, in addition to bilateral engagements with his counterparts, External Affairs Minister will call on the top leadership in all three countries, the Ministry of External Affairs said on Friday.
In Paraguay, EAM will also inaugurate the premises of the newly opened Indian Embassy which started functioning in January 2022. This would be the first-ever visit by an Indian External Affairs Minister to the country.
In Brazil and Argentina, EAM will co-chair the Joint Commission Meetings (JCM) with his counterparts. JCMs will review the entire gamut of bilateral relationships in diverse fields and discuss regional and global issues of common interests.
Argentina and Brazil are strategic partners of India. In addition, EAM will also interact with business leaders and the Indian communities in these countries. In Brazil, he is scheduled to deliver an address at the Rio Branco Institute (Brazilian Diplomatic Academy).
"EAM's visit to these 3 countries will provide an opportunity to continue the ongoing high-level engagements with our partners in Latin American countries (LAC), explore new areas of cooperation in the post-pandemic era, and exchange views on issues of bilateral and international significance," a press release said.
Jaishankar on Friday met with the Ambassadors from Latin American and Caribbean countries in New Delhi ahead of his visit to the region. He thanked the Ambassadors for their perspectives and insights into strengthening mutual relations and cooperation.
Taking to Twitter, Jaishankar said, "Pleasure to host Ambassadors in New Delhi from the Group of Latin America and the Caribbean countries- Argentina, Brazil, Colombia, Costa Rica, Cuba, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Jamaica, Mexico, Panama, Paraguay, Suriname and Uruguay."
"So much potential for growing our cooperation. Encourage their efforts to realise it fully. Thanked them for their perspectives and insights as I head to the region tonight," he added. (ANI)