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PM Narendra Modi conveys to Donald Trump his concern over 'civil disturbances' in US

Last Updated : 02 June 2020, 21:35 IST

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Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday expressed concern over “ongoing civil disturbances” in the United States during a phone-call with American President Donald Trump.

Modi “expressed concern regarding the ongoing civil disturbances in the US, and conveyed his best wishes for an early resolution of the situation,” according to a press-release issued by the Prime Minister’s Office after his talks with Trump over the phone.

The protests over the death of a black man while being arrested by police escalated over the past week. Trump threatened to deploy US army personnel to quell the growing unrest.

New Delhi rarely in the past commented on any unrest in the US or protests against the US Government, except for condemning terrorist attacks.

Modi, however, chose to refer to the “civil disturbance” arising out of a protest against police and authorities during his phone call with Trump. It came several months after the US subtly disapproved detention of political leaders, curbs on the internet, and other restrictive measures the BJP government in New Delhi imposed in Jammu and Kashmir in the wake of the move to strip the state of its special status and reorganize it into two Union Territories.

New Delhi protested against critical remarks by the US lawmakers on its moves in J&K and the curbs imposed by it, pointing out that it was an “internal affair” of India.

Trump was in New Delhi when the violent clashes broke out in the National Capital Territory of India between people supporting and opposing the Modi Government’s Citizenship Amendment Act.

The US President, however, refrained from taking it up with the Prime Minister or making any comment about it during his press conference in New Delhi. Two days after his return; Alice Wells, the then acting US Assistant Secretary of State for South and Central Asian Affairs, however, subtly nudged India to respect the right of peaceful assembly (to protest against the CAA).

A US federal commission in March this year recommended President Donald Trump’s administration in Washington D.C. to designate India as a “Country of Particular Concern” in view of its “sharp downward turn” in religious freedom.

It also recommended to the US State Department to impose “targeted sanctions” on Indian Government’s “agencies and officials” responsible for severe violations of religious freedom, by freezing their assets and barring their entry into the United States.

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Published 02 June 2020, 21:35 IST

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