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Modi arrives in US for Quad summit, bilateral talks with leaders

By Arul Louis, Prime Minister Narendra Modi has arrived in the US to attend the Quad summit convened by President Joe Biden, hold bilateral talks with leaders and address the United Nations General Assembly.

He was welcomed by US officials, Indian diplomats and members of the Indian diaspora when he landed at the Joint Base Andrews, a military airport outside Washington that is used by VIPs, Wednesday evening.

Modi tweeted, “Grateful to the Indian community in Washington DC for the warm welcome. Our diaspora is our strength. It is commendable how the Indian diaspora has distinguished itself across te world.”

On Friday, he will have a personal meeting with Biden, their first after the president’s election.

Foreign Secretary Harshvardhan Shringla told reporters in New Delhi that they will discuss “the current regional security situation following developments in Afghanistan” and “the need to stem radicalisation, extremism, cross-border terrorism and dismantling of global terror networks”.

He will also meet with Vice President Kamala Harris, who is partly of Indian descent, and Prime Ministers Scott Morrison of Australia and Yoshihide Suga of Japan.

At the Quad summit along with Biden, Morrison and Suga, Modi will take stock of the progress made by the group since their virtual meeting in March and plan on extending their reach in the Indo-Pacific region, which has become important in US geopolitical strategy to face a confrontational China,.

“We elevated the Quad partnership among Australia, India, Japan and the United States to take on challenges ranging from health security to climate to emerging technologies, engaging with regional institutions,” Biden said on Tuesday at the UN.

This is the first in-person summit of the Quad.

Modi is also expected to meet with business leaders and investors to pitch his “Make in India” initiative.