Modi to attend
COP26 summit in Glasgow,
Boris Johnson is happy

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LONDON: India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi has confirmed his participation in COP26 climate summit and British Prime Minister Boris Johnson has reportedly breath a sign of relief on Thursday after Indian PM Narendra Modi confirmed he will attend the summit. 

Mr Modi will be coming to Glasgow, in a much-needed boon for the UN event after it emerged by Russia’s Vladimir Putin and China’s Xi Jingping are set to stay away.

The UK will host the 26th UN Climate Change Conference of the Parties (COP26) in Glasgow on 31 October – 12 November 2021.The COP26 summit will bring parties together to accelerate action towards the goals of the Paris Agreement and the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change.

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson

Downing Street hailed the news, which brings the number of confirmed world leaders attending to more than 120. As one of the biggest carbon emitters, India’s involvement is regarded as critical, the Daily Mail has reported.

Welcoming the announcement from Mr Modi, Mr Johnson’s spokesman said: ‘India play an important role in this and the Prime Minister has had a number of conversations with Modi on the importance of climate change so we look forward to discussing it with him further.’ 

Mr Johnson has insisted he is hoping for a ‘good’ turnout in Glasgow, but pointed to the pandemic as a factor. 

The Kremlin said yesterday that Mr Putin will not be attending the gathering in Glasgow at the end of the month, citing the Covid situation.  He is expected to address the conference by video-link. 

It comes after China’s Xi Jinping made clear he is not intending to travel to the UN event, heightening fears that the summit will fail to make significant progress in the fight against climate change.

Logo of Glasgow conference

US President Joe Biden confirmed only last week that he will be there, and Australian prime minister Scott Morrison is coming despite initial doubts. 

If China does not commit to new action, the prospect of keeping global warming to 1.5C could well be scuppered. The country is responsible for 27 per cent of global carbon emissions.

Even the Queen has been unable to conceal her frustration at the vague guest list for COP26.  Caught on microphone while attending the opening of the Welsh parliament in Cardiff last week, the monarch said: ‘Extraordinary isn’t it… I’ve been hearing all about Cop… still don’t know who is coming… no idea.

Mr Johnson has repeatedly hailed COP26 as a major moment, saying in September that ‘this is the most important period I think now in the history of the planet – because COP simply must succeed’.