Modi holds talks with Xi Jinping, Putin on sidelines of SCO summit

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KRAGYSTAN: Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi Thursday said he had an “extremely fruitful meeting” with Chinese President Xi Jinping on the sidelines of the SCO Summit here and discussed the full spectrum of bilateral relations as they vowed to work together to improve the economic and cultural ties.

This is the first meeting between the two leaders after Modi’s re-election following the stunning victory of the BJP in the general elections last month.

The meeting also comes a month after the 1267 Al Qaeda Sanctions Committee of the powerful UN Security Council designated Pakistan-based terror group Jaish-e-Mohammed chief Masood Azhar as a global terrorist after China lifted its technical hold on the proposal to blacklist him.

“Had an extremely fruitful meeting with President Xi Jinping. Our talks included the full spectrum of India-China relations. We shall continue working together to improve economic and cultural ties between our nations,” Modi tweeted after the delegation-level talks with President Xi.

The meeting began with President Xi congratulating Prime Minister Modi over his election victory. “After the election results in India, I got your message, and today again you wish me on the victory, I am very grateful to you for this,” Modi replied.

Xi had extended “heartfelt congratulations” to Prime Minister Modi for winning the general elections last month, in a rare gesture of greeting a foreign leader well before the official announcement of the results.

“On behalf of all Indians, I wish you a very happy birthday,” Modi told Xi, greeting the Chinese leader who will turn 66 on June 15. “As you said, in the days to come, we both can progress on several subjects. We both have a contemporary tenure to work more,” he said.