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Narendra Modi to be first Indian PM to preside over UNSC meeting, says ex-UN envoy Syed Akbaruddin

·3 min read

Hyderabad: Prime Minister Narendra Modi will be the first Indian prime minister to preside over a meeting during New Delhi's presidency of the United Nations Security Council (UNSC), said Syed Akbaruddin, India's former envoy to UN, on Sunday.

Speaking to India, Former Permanent Representative of India to UN, Akkbarudin said that in over 75 years, this was the first time Indian political leadership invested in presiding over an event of the 15-member UN body and that it depicted that the country's leadership wants to lead from the front.

"Our Prime Minister Narendra Modi will be the first Indian prime minister, who has decided to preside over a meeting of the United Nation Security Council. It shows that leadership wants to lead from the front. It also shows that India and its political leadership are invested in our foreign policy ventures," Akbaruddin, who is currently Dean of Kautilya School of Public Policy.

India on Sunday assumed the rotating presidency of the UNSC and will be hosting signature events related to maritime security, peacekeeping, and counterterrorism during the month.

Modi, External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar and foreign secretary Harsh Shringla will also chair high-level meetings on topics of global importance.

"This is our eighth stint on the UNSC yet in the 75+years, this is the first time that our political leadership has invested in presiding over an event of the security council," Akbaruddin said.

"Although this is a virtual meeting, it's still a first meeting of the sort for us. It is historic. The last time an Indian PM was engaged in this effort was the then PM PV Narasimha Rao in 1992 when he attended a UNSC meeting," he added.

India took over the presidency from France. Ambassador of India to the United Nations, TS Tirumurti thanked France Permanent Representative to the UN, Nicolas de Riviere, for steering the UN Security Council for the month of July.

"India has just assumed the presidency of the UN Security Council on 1 August. India and France enjoy historical and close relations. I thank France for all the support which they've given us during our stint in the Security Council," Tirumurti said in a video message.

During our presidency, India said it is organising three high-level signature meetings focussing on our priority areas--maritime security, peacekeeping, and counter-terrorism.

India will also be organising a solemn event in memory of peacekeepers.

Tirumurti apprised that the UN Security Council will also have on its agenda several important meetings including Syria, Iraq, Somalia, Yemen, and the Middle East.

Security Council will also be adopting important resolutions on Somalia, Mali, and UN Interim Force in Lebanon, he added.

This is India's first presidency in the UNSC during its 2021-22 tenure as a non permanent member of the UNSC. The two-year tenure of India as a non-permanent member of the UNSC began on 1 January, 2021.

The first working day of India's presidency will be on Monday, 2 August when Tirumurti will hold a hybrid press briefing in the UN headquarters on the Council's programme of work for the month.

Also See: India to focus on counterterrorism, maritime security and peacekeeping during UNSC presidency in August

India will always be a voice of moderation, says EAM S Jaishankar as India takes over UNSC presidency

PM meets social and religous leaders, asks them to help tackle COVID-19 vaccine hesitancy

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