Cross-border terrorism unacceptable: Bhutan PM to Modi
CAVELOSSIM: India on Sunday received strong support from Bhutan over cross-border terrorism with the Himalayan nation terming it as the “worst form of terrorism”.
This view was expressed by Bhutanese Prime Minister Tshering Tobgay during a bilateral meeting with Narendra Modi, MEA spokesperson Vikas Swarup told reporters on the sidelines of the BRICS-BIMSTEC outreach summit at Cavelossim, 50 km from Panaji.
“The Bhutan PM said the people and government of Bhutan were deeply concerned over the deteriorating security situation in the region, caused entirely on account of terrorism.
“He (Tobgay) said that terrorism in all its forms was unacceptable, but cross-border terrorism – he specifically used the word – is truly the worst form of terrorism,” Swarup told reporters. “He said the whole region and the international community had stood with India in the aftermath of the Uri terrorist attack and that Bhutan stands shoulder to shoulder with India,” the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) spokesperson said.
“In particular, he praised the PM’s leadership on this issue, both diplomatically and on the ground,” Swarup said, without specifically mentioning if the Bhutanese leader was lauding Modi for the surgical strikes on terrorist launch pads across LoC.
“He then conveyed his appreciation for the government of India’s assistance, which is touching the lives of every Bhutanese. He referred to the 84 big projects that are being implemented with Indian assistance and the 595 small development projects, which he said, had reached every small village and town of Bhutan,” Swarup said.
The Bhutan PM fondly recalled Modi’s visit to their country and said the people of Bhutan were deeply touched that Modi had chosen Bhutan to be the first country for his foreign trip after becoming the PM.
“He also spoke of the three mega power projects, with a combined capacity of 3000 MW, which are being implemented in Bhutan.”
Modi thanked Tobgay for the “very strong support” that Bhutan gave after the Uri terror attacks and also the solidarity shown in relation to the SAARC summit.
“Tobgay said the bilateral cooperation in hydel power sector was significant as it was contributing to offsetting the carbon emissions,” according to Swarup.
There was also a discussion on the upcoming 50th year of bilateral ties between India and Bhutan, due in 2018, he said.
Tobgay sought Modi’s advice on how both countries could celebrate the occasion in a befitting manner.
“Modi said Goa is not new for Tobgay as he had been here last November. Modi conveyed his greetings to the royal family of Bhutan,” Swarup said.