Modi speaks to British PM, raises vandalism of Indian HC

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FILE - In this Saturday July 27, 2019 file photo, Britain's Prime Minister Boris Johnson gestures during a speech on domestic priorities at the Science and Industry Museum in Manchester, England. Leaders of the UK and European Union hardened their positions Tuesday Aug. 20, 2019, on whether it was possible to re-open Brexit negotiations, dimming prospects for any breakthrough ahead of a summit of G-7 leaders this weekend. (AP Photo/Rui Vieira, File)

New Delhi:  Prime Minister Narendra Modi, in a telephone conversation on Tuesday with his British counterpart Boris Johnson, drew his attention to vandalism of the Indian High Commission by a Pakistan-led mob on August 15. The British PM regretted the incident and assured that all necessary steps would be taken to ensure safety and security of the mission, its personnel and visitors.

During the phone call, Modi raised the issue of challenges posed by vested interests pursuing their motivated agenda, including by violent means.

On August 15, Indians and people of Indian origin gathered outside the Indian High Commission in London to celebrate the 73rd Independence Day of India were abused, and pelted with eggs and water bottles by Pakistan-sponsored protesters, who included separatist Sikhs.

Stones were thrown at the Indian mission, and the Indian tricolour was damaged by the Pakistan-led mob that was protesting India’s revoking the special status of Kashmir. The police were outnumbered by the protesters.

Also pointing out that terrorism had plagued all parts of the world, including India and Europe, Modi stressed the importance of effective steps to ward off the threats posed by radicalisation, violence and intolerance, particularly in the context of the expanding footprint of terrorist organisations such as ISIS, a statement said.

Modi also congratulated Johnson on his election to the office, and expressed his readiness to work with him for strengthening the strategic partnership between India and the United Kingdom.

Johnson also extended his congratulations to Modi on the latter’s emphatic electoral victory for the second term in his office.

Both leaders agreed that as the world’s pre-eminent democracies, the two countries have much to contribute together to effectively addressing the many challenges faced by the world today.

The two leaders looked forward to interacting during the G-7 Summit in France’s Biarritz on August 25.

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