Growing Islamophobic Politics In Europe

Islamophobic Politics Amplified in Europe

Italy’s Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni is often in the news for making bold statements, but she recently scoffed at Islamic culture and said that there is no place for it in Europe. She says there is no place for Islam in Europe: ‘There is a problem of compatibility’

Her comments were made at a political festival organised by her far-right party – the Brothers of Italy, in Rome, which was attended by the British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak and X’s owner Elon Musk, too.

In her speech Meloni said, “The Islamic cultural centres in Italy are financed by Saudi Arabia where Sharia is in force. In Europe, there is a very Islamisation process distant from the values ​​of our civilisation! I believe that there is a problem of compatibility between Islamic culture and the values ​​and rights of our civilization.”

Meanwhile, an old video of her also re-surfaced on various social media platforms that shows her saying she would not allow Sharia law to be implemented in Italy. Meloni also criticised Saudi Arabia for its strict Sharia Law.

“I believe that these should be raised, which does not mean generalising on Islam. It means raising the problem that there is a process of Islamisation in Europe that is very distant from the values of our civilisation,” she added.

During his speech at the event, Rishi Sunak said that he would push for global reforms to the asylum system while warning that the threat of a growing number of refugees could ‘overwhelm’ parts of Europe.

He even warned that some ‘enemies’ were deliberately ‘driving people to our shores to try and destabilise our societies’.

“If we do not tackle this problem, the numbers will only grow. It will overwhelm our countries and our capacity to help those who actually need our help the most,” Rishi Sunak said, adding, “If that requires us to update our laws and lead an international conversation to amend the post-war frameworks around asylum, then we must do that.”

Meanwhile, Tesla’s founder and X’s owner Elon Musk marked a rare appearance as he met world leaders at the annual gathering. “Immigration isn’t enough to combat population shrinking,” he said at the event, explaining: “There is value in cultures, we don’t want Italy as a culture to disappear, we want to maintain a reasonable cultural identity of those countries or they won’t be those countries.”

Analysing the speeches given by these three leaders, makes it clear that not only political leaders alone but even business leaders are increasingly turning to Islamophobia, based on their belief systems and also converting political issues to anti-Islam utterances, to gain public support.

Both Sunak and Musk couched their Islamophobic feelings into anti-immigrants policies. This could be partly blamed to these countries’ own doing. Firstly, various European nations opened their doors for immigrants from the Muslim dominated countries.

The migrant’s flow to many western countries increased as the increasing prosperity there was matched with no desire to engage in menial jobs at lower wages, gaps which were filled by the migrants. Further, they allowed Muslim immigrants entry to assuage their own guilt feeling, as many of the migrants fleeing their homes were coming from those countries where these countries had started or were supporting wars against the so-called radical or Islamist elements.

Though many of these immigrants were not connected to any radical ideology, but they became an easy scapegoat to be blamed for any wrongs happening in these western societies.

Rishi Sunak has been accused of adopting the “toxic” rhetoric of his former home secretary Suella Braverman, after he warned that migration would “overwhelm” European countries without firm action.

Sunak also said that both he and Meloni, with whom he has been forging a close relationship over hardline migration policies, were taking inspiration from Margaret Thatcher’s steadfast radicalism in their quest to do “whatever it takes” to “stop the boats”.

Sunak’s relationship with Meloni, Italy’s first female premier has blossomed over their shared hardline approach towards immigration through policies that have pushed the limits of legality. They have also bonded over their admiration of Thatcher.

As far as Elon Musk is concerned, recently studies have found that Islamophobic comments are being spread widely through X and the company does not respond to complaints or seem to take any remedial action, to handle the issue. X users resort to spelling mistakes intentionally while debating controversial subjects like religion, terrorism, crime, and even the Indian history.

These are not errors made in the heat of the moment, but careful distortions meant to keep the tweet from being flagged or deleted for hateful content. For example, a tweet posted in November 2022 that singled out people with Muslim names from a series of random crime news reports did not refer to the perpetrators as “Muslims” but instead used the phrase “Ola ke Bande” (Ola’s group or Ola’s gang). The word “Ola,” which refers to the Indian ride-hailing taxi service, was used in place of “Allah.” The tweet author currently has close to 7,00,000 followers.

Reporting such tweets for targeting a group of people based on their religion is now more difficult than reporting a hateful tweet simply referring to “Muslims,” as the X moderators viewing the complaint would have to be familiar with not only the Hindi phrase being used, but also understand the double meaning of “Ola.” Moreover, if the moderation process were automated, the machine would most likely see a user verbally abusing a taxi service, which does not constitute hateful conduct.

Meanwhile, reports from France speak of a parliamentary vote in favour of a new tough bill against the immigrants. Right-wing French leader Marine Le Pen described this as an ‘ideological victory’, due to the inclusion of many hardline measures

In fact from Italy’s Meloni to France’s Le Pen, to Geert Wilders’ popularity in the Netherlands and Austria and Hungary’s increasing public support to the right-wing politicians on the rise, the recent developments point to the wave of right-wing and Islamophobic politics overtaking Europe.

(Asad Mirza is a Delhi-based senior political and international affairs commentator.)

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Corner Shop Zaildars

Corner Shop Zaildars

Some South Asians are quite enterprising, particularly in understanding local needs and catering to them. When South Asians first arrived in big numbers in Britain and USA. Most took up menial jobs. Some saved and started small businesses. Then some went into politics and now some have taken over the politics. Quite smart.

The Asians who succeeded in small Businesses realised that indigenous people (White British) were frustrated with shop opening times. Shops essentially opened 8 am to 6 pm. People had to rush back from work to get any shopping done. There was no Sunday opening since it had been outlawed by the Church a few centuries in the past. It’s Christian Sabbath, or Church Day.

Come the Patels and the Khans. They started opening from 7 am to 9 pm. There was an exponential increase in corner shops owned by Indians and Pakistanis. They exploited local needs. They started competing with each other, eventually opening up to midnight. The Supermarkets lobbied the Government. If Patels and Khans can open shops till late, why not supermarkets. There are now even 24-hour Supermarkets and open on Sundays. No longer going to Church when one can go to Supermarket and have tea and cake in their shop as well.

Taxis was another enterprise South Asians quickly got into. The legendry Black Can in Britain and the Yellow Cab in USA were expensive. Come in the South Asians with ‘private cabs’ driving in the locality. Soon many indigenous Brits and Americans started getting into these cheap taxis which were really private cabs. Now Uber and others have got into the act and taken over.

Then came professions, such as doctors, dentists, accountants etc. They worked harder and longer hours in junior posts resigned not to get senior posts. The British NHS and American hospital systems became dependent on the junior Indian or Pakistani doctor. Eventually they took over and even the heads of Doctors bodies are Indians now.

Then came politics. First they began to represent the migrant population in small posts such as local councillor (equivalent of Municipal Councillor). Slowly they became Members of Parliament and now even ministers, Prime Ministers, Vice Presidents (USA) and Presidential hopefuls. How have they done it? Just as the corner shopkeeper did it.

They realised that the indigenous White politicians had gagged themselves with a mountain of Politically Correct language and no-go areas. White politicians could not be seen to be racist, cruel, exploiting etc. Any White politician speaking against immigration is termed ‘racist’. Any White politician promoting cuts in social welfare for disabled is termed cruel right wing with morals of Victorian elite.

So step in the South Asians. Indians seem to have done better at the game. They realised that the majority White population is still racist to some extent, has had enough of immigration and many want welfare cuts to save tax.

Indian politicians had no qualm to ‘champion’ these popular but suppressed opinions. An Indian can oppose immigration without being accused of being racist. An Indian can go around slashing welfare cuts and still be thought as coming from a community that suffered economic deprivation, so can’t be Victorian in nature!

Rishi and Suella in Britain and Ramaswamy in USA all realised they can say things and champion the prejudices, the desire to keep more migrants out and to cut welfare to the bone without being called racist or Victorian. They even became Brexiters without having any sense of English history in their ancestry except that read in the classroom. What cultural friction borne of history does a Rishi and a Suella have in their cultural constructions against Europeans?  But they used it to appeal to British nationalism, becoming more English than the English.

The results are phenomenal. Rishi became the Prime Minister. Suella became Home minister. And Ramaswamy is hoping to become America’s next President. However, Ramaswamy has an unashamed white competitor who seems to have no qualms about shouting racist innuendoes, sexist statements or a tirade against the poor.

Unfortunately, the Indians started competing against each other in who can appeal to the most right wing extreme sections of white society. A bit like the corner shops stretching the opening times further and further to compete with each other until they were open almost all hours with a fatigued family roped in.

So far Rishi has knocked off Suella. She is fighting back with ever more extreme statements and getting the red necks of Britain cheering her on. It is a comic.

Yet it may end soon. Like the big supermarkets that decided they can do what the corner shop was doing and do it better, the White politician is also beginning to lose inhibitions. The Indians have opened back the road and the great White will now take over. It will soon be ok to be racist and yet not be accused of being racist.

It’s a bit like the story of the Indian Zaildars. The corner shop Zaildars have changed Britain and USA and continue to do so in politics and other fields of life.

India Achieves Net Zero

At the upcoming COP 28 in Dubai, China is going to boast that it is ahead of its promise to achieve net zero by 2050. India says it will be there by 2060. Some predict that India will reach it next century if the world survives. Yet India has already reached net zero and its ever creative statisticians seemed to have missed it. So I decided to give them a helping hand.

Modiji started a fad for daily yoga among people. It is said that yoga increases life span by 10 years, if done routinely. It appears that millions of Indians regularly perform yoga. Whatever doomsday armchair social pundits say, Indians will add another 10 years to their lifespans.

Now, that will be ahead of net zero and too fast for India. So to balance the extra years of life, Modi Government has allowed pollution on a supersonic scale. In fact it is 500 times more that permitted level. Stubble burning, industrial fumes, cars and you name it, have taken over the air in India.

The amount of pollution is thought to decrease average age by 10 years. Environment alarmists say Indians will die younger than they are expected to.

But here is the maths for statisticians. Yoga adds 10 years and pollution takes away 10 years. End result is net zero. Lick your wounds China!

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Netanyahu Sunak

Netanyahu Holds Private Meeting With Sunak

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Thursday held a private meeting with British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak at his office in Jerusalem.

“Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is currently holding a private meeting with British Prime Minister @RishiSunak at the Prime Minister’s Office in Jerusalem. The leaders will also hold an expanded meeting, at the conclusion of which they will issue statements to the media,” as per the Israeli Prime Minister’s official handle on ‘X’.

Sunak on Thursday also met Israeli President Isaac Herzog.

Herzog said that during such difficult days, we see clearly who are Israel’s true friends.

“Thank you Prime Minister of the United Kingdom Rishi Sunak for coming to Israel and for your support and firm stand by the Israeli people. It is time to express a clear moral voice – this is a battle for the values of all humanity. The world needs to understand that if we do not prevent Hamas and other terrorist organizations from carrying out murderous and criminal attacks – they will not stop with Israel,” he wrote on ‘X’.

Meanwhile, Sunak said: “I’ve just met President @Isaac_Herzog and conveyed my gratitude for the support provided to British nationals caught up in the terror attacks. Together we agreed on the importance of getting urgent humanitarian support to ordinary Palestinians in Gaza who are also suffering.”

The British Prime Minister arrived in Israel on Thursday amid the ongoing Israel-Hamas war.

Upon his arrival, he said: “I am in Israel, a nation in grief. I grieve with you and stand with you against the evil that is terrorism. Today, and always.”

The British PM met families that had their loved ones taken away from them as a result of the war.

“To have a child taken from you is a parent’s worst nightmare. This morning I heard from families going through this unbearable agony. Working with our partners, we’re determined to secure the release of the hostages taken by Hamas terrorists,” he wrote on ‘X’.

Ahead of his departure to Israel, the British PM said: “Every civilian death is a tragedy. And too many lives have been lost following Hamas’s horrific act of terror.”

“The attack on Al Ahli Hospital should be a watershed moment for leaders in the region and across the world to come together to avoid further dangerous escalation of conflict,” added the statement.

The Israel Defense Forces confirmed on Wednesday that a failed Palestinian Islamic Jihad rocket launch caused the explosion outside the hospital in Gaza.

“According to our intelligence, Hamas checked the reports, understood it was an Islamic Jihad rocket that had misfired–and decided to launch a global media campaign to hide what really happened,” explained IDF Spokesman Rear Admiral Daniel Hagari on Wednesday.

“They went as far as inflating the number of casualties. They understood, with absolute certainty, that it was a rocket misfired by Islamic Jihad that damaged the hospital,” he added.

Sunak’s visit to Israel comes a day after US President Joe Biden paid a solidarity visit to the Jewish state.

On Tuesday, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz visited Israel, and French President Emmanuel Macron will also reportedly travel to the Jewish state.

Meanwhile, Israel’s Ministry of Health has reported that 309 people wounded in terrorist attacks since the start of the war with Hamas are hospitalized as of October 19, at 8:00 am. Of the people hospitalized, 80 are in serious condition, 159 are in moderate condition and 70 are lightly wounded.

The ministry reported that since the Hamas attack of October 7, 4,629 wounded have been evacuated to hospitals, of whom 12 were mortally wounded, 279 were in serious condition, 764 in moderate condition and 3,188 were lightly wounded.

As many as 239 people suffered from anxiety and 145 were admitted to hospitals for medical evaluation.

Meanwhile, as a “ground offensive” of the besieged Gaza Strip loomed, hundreds of Israeli tanks were deployed near the border in south Israel on Thursday, waiting for the all-clear from the country’s political establishment and the military top brass.

Israeli tanks and troops mounted on armoured vehicles were deployed in the region, seeming to suggest that a ground assault on Hamas in their backyard, Gaza, could begin any time soon.

Meanwhile, the Israel Defence Forces (IDF) said four rockets of nine launched from Lebanese territory were intercepted, adding that several anti-tank missiles were fired from Lebanon towards Israeli forces.

The IDF added that in response to the attacks, Israeli forces targeted the site in Lebanon from where rockets were fired into Israel and also struck at Hezbollah terrorist infrastructure using tank fire.

The Israeli forces also claimed to have thwarted and dismantled a terrorist cell using a UAV (unmanned aerial vehicle) of the IDF. (ANI)

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Twinkle Akshay Sunak

Twinkle, Akshay Pose With Sunak In London

Power couple Twinkle Khanna and Akshay Kumar met UK Prime Minister Rishi Sunak during their London visit.

Twinkle took to Instagram on Wednesday to post a video of their visit to London. She captioned the post, “As much as I dislike wearing heels and dressing up, this evening was worth all the damaged toes. @sudha_murthy_official remains my hero, but it was pretty cool meeting her son-in-law, the prime minister 🙂 @rishisunakmp Also put the sound on and hear @andreabocelliofficial Congratulations @anusuya12 and”

The video starts with a performance of Italian tenor Andrea Bocelli at an event.

At the end of the video Twinkle and Akshay can be seen posing with UK PM Rishi Sunak.

Akshay and UK PM Sunak chose a formal suit while, Twinkle wore a white dress with a leopard design jacket.

Earlier this month, Rishi Sunak along with his wife Akshata Murty arrived in New Delhi to attend the G20 Summit hosted by India under its Presidency. He along with his wife also offered prayers at Akshardham Temple in New Delhi during the visit.

Meanwhile, on the work front, Akshay will be seen in the drama film ‘Mission Raniganj: The Great Bharat Rescue’.

Apart from this, Akshay will also be seen in the Hindi remake of the Tamil drama ‘Soorarai Pottru’ which is all set to hit the theatres on February 16, 2024.

He also has an action thriller film ‘Bade Miyan Chote Miyan’ alongside Tiger Shroff and a comedy film ‘Housefull 5’ in his kitty. (ANI)

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Sunak India G20

Sunak Calls India Visit For G20 Important

As the G20 Summit culminates, British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak calls the visit to India “important” and shared some glimpses of his two-day visit on social media. 

Sharing the video on his social media ‘X’, he stated, “An important trip to India for the G20, delivering for the UK on the world stage.”

In the video message, he highlighted Russian President Putin’s absence in the G20 Summit, and said that “Isolation is the policy that Vladimir Putin has chosen.” 

“Global issues matter. They impact all of us. We saw that during Covid and we have seen the devastating consequences of Putin’s illegal invasion of Ukraine, both on the Ukrainian people and the rise in global energy prices. But we are under no illusion these issues can’t be solved in isolation. Isolation is the policy that Vladimir Putin has chosen, ripping up the Black Sea Grain Deal, which has provided a lifeline for millions,” the message said. 

Along with the videos of his meeting PM Modi, he added that although Putin was not there at the G20 to face the world but we were there to address some of the biggest issues in the world. 

“Putin wasn’t at the G20 to face the world. But we were, working with our allies, our partners from around the world to address some of the biggest challenges that we face. Stabilising the global economy, isolating Putin and strengthening our international relationships. And by doing that, delivering the jobs, growth and security that the British public rightly expect from their Prime Minister,” he added in the video. 

The video shared on his social media also showed the moments of joy he shared with other world leaders. He further shared a glimpse of his meetings held with global leaders. 

Sunak departed on Sunday after attending a successful G20 Leaders Summit in New Delhi. 

Sunak who arrived in the national capital on Friday, accompanied by wife Akshata Murty also offered prayers at the BAPS Swaminarayan Akshardham temple before paying his respects to Mahatma Gandhi at Rajghat.

Earlier on Friday, Sunak had in an interaction with ANI called himself “a proud Hindu” and said he wished to visit the Mandir during his stay in the capital.

During the G20 Summit, the UK PM has called on leaders to work together ahead of the COP28 Summit this December to both reduce their countries’ own carbon emissions and support vulnerable economies to deal with the consequences of climate change.

The UK has led international efforts to help developing countries tackle climate change, including by pledging to spend 11.6 billion pounds on international climate finance between 2021 and 2026.

In a significant announcement, the UK PM also announced a USD 2 billion to the UN-backed Green Climate Fund – the biggest single funding commitment the UK has made to help the world tackle climate change. (ANI) 

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Sunak With Wife At Delhi’s Akshardham

Sunak With Wife Offer Prayers At Delhi’s Akshardham

United Kingdom Prime Minister Rishi Sunak and his wife Akshata Murty on Sunday offered prayers at Akshardham Temple in Delhi. 

Sunak, who is on an official visit to the city for the G20 Summit arrived with wife Akshata at the Akshardham Temple early this morning to offer prayers before heading to Rajghat. Akshata was seen in a traditional salwar kurta and both she and Sunak were photographed barefoot inside the temple premises. 

Earlier on Friday, Sunak had in an interaction with ANI called himself “a proud Hindu” and said he wished to visit the Mandir during his stay in the capital.

Elaborate security arrangements were put in place in and around the temple.

In a post shared on X, formerly known as Twitter, Akshardham Temple stated, “Honoured to welcome Prime Minister @RishiSunak and #AkshataMurthy to celebrate the shared cultural heritage between India and the UK.”

PM Sunak and his convoy arrived at 6.45 in the morning and were warmly welcomed in a traditional Hindu manner symbolising goodwill and friendship, the BAPS Swaminarayan Akshardham Temple said in a statement.

Sunak was then greeted by swamis, as well as senior leaders from the Temple who relayed a special message on behalf of Mahant Swami Maharaj, spiritual leader of BAPS.

The spiritual leader extended his personal wishes and prayers for Sunak and the other delegates, the temple authorities said.

“In the spirit of Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam, we pray for you and all the attendees: May the summit be a resounding success in collectively helping the whole world towards peace, righteous prosperity, and global harmony,” the message from Mahant Swami Maharaj, spiritual leader of BAPS read.

The UK Prime Minister was given an overview of the 100-acre spiritual and cultural complex that portrays the traditions and ancient architecture of India and promotes the timeless Hindu spiritual messages of faith, devotion and harmony, the statement read.

Sunak and his wife paid their respects to the sacred images in the and admired the art and architecture. The couple also performed abhishek (ritual pouring of water) on the murti of Shri Nilkanth Varni Maharaj, and offered prayers for world peace, progress and harmony, the BAPS said.

Speaking to ANI, the Akshardham Temple Director Jyotindra Dave said Sunak had an “extraordinary experience” at the temple.

“He enjoyed every minute here. He went on extending the time and the people were really worried that he had so many programs but nobody can say that we have to go out. It is he who decides and his wife also was very happy. He performed the Pooja and Aarti with a lot of faith…We showed him the temple and also gave him a model of the temple as a gift.”

While speaking to ANI on Friday, Rishi Sunak had expressed his hope that he will find time to visit a temple, here in India, during his stay for the G20 Summit.

“I am a proud Hindu. That’s how I was raised, that’s how I am. Hopefully, I can visit the Mandir while I am here for the next couple of days. We just had Rakshabandhan, so from my sister and my cousin, I have all my Rakhis,” Rishi Sunak said.

“I didn’t have time to celebrate Janmashtami. But hopefully, as I said I can make up for that if we visit a Mandir this time,” he added.

He further said that faith is something very important as it gives strength and resilience during stress.

“It is something that is important to me. I think faith is something that helps everybody who has faith in their lives, particularly when you have these stressful jobs like I do. Having faith gives you resilience, gives you strength that is important and it provides an outlook on life which I find particularly valuable,” Sunak added.

Rishi Sunak along with his wife Akshata Murty arrived in New Delhi on Friday to attend the G20 Summit hosted by India under its Presidency. (ANI)

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Sunak Delhi's Akshardham Temple

Sunak To Visit Delhi’s Akshardham Temple Tomorrow

United Kingdom Prime Minister Rishi Sunak, who is in India for the G20 Summit, is scheduled to visit Delhi’s Akshardham temple on Sunday. 

While talking with ANI, the UK PM said that he will visit Delhi’s Akshardham temple tommorrow. 

Expressing pride for his ‘Hindu’ roots, Rishi Sunak yesterday expressed his hope that he will find time to visit a temple, here in India, during his stay for the G20 Summit.

Sunak said that he has “enormous respect” for PM Modi and said that he is keen to support him in making G20 an enormous success.

Speaking exclusively to ANI, Rishi Sunak said, “I am a proud Hindu. That’s how I was raised, that’s how I am. Hopefully, I can visit the Mandir while I am here for the next couple of days. We just had Rakshabandhan, so from my sister and my cousin, I have all my Rakhis.”

“I didn’t have time to celebrate Janmashtami. But hopefully, as I said I can make up for that if we visit a Mandir this time,” he added.

He further said that faith is something very important as it gives strength and resilience during stress.

Earlier today, PM Sunak held a bilateral meeting with his UK counterpart Rishi Sunak on the sidelines of the G20 Summit being held in the national capital under India’s presidency. The meeting between the two leaders was held at the Bharat Mandapam in Pragati Maidan, the venue of the Summit.

Talks between the two leaders followed their meeting held on the sidelines of the G7 Summit in Hiroshima in May this year in which they had discussed the India-UK free trade agreement, innovation, and science along with ways to strengthen the Comprehensive Strategic Partnership between the two countries.The two countries are negotiating a Free Trade Agreement, talks for which had begun in 2022. The 12th round of negotiations for the UK-India Free Trade Agreement (FTA) took place from August 8 to 31 this year.In August this year, Union Commerce and Industry Minister Piyush Goyal and the UK’s Secretary of State for Trade Kemi Badenoch took stock of the FTA and agreed on ways to progress the negotiations. The 13th round of negotiations is due to take place in September.

Earlier today, PM Modi and Rishi Sunak participated in Session 1 on ‘One Earth’ during the G20 Summit. Sunak said that the world is looking to G20 to provide leadership and that the leaders are meeting at a time of enormous challenges. He expressed confidence that the leaders will together be able to address the challenges.

In a post shared on X, Sunak stated, “15 years ago, #G20 leaders came together for the first time to restore global growth after the financial crisis. We meet at a time of enormous challenges – the world is looking to the G20 once again to provide leadership. Together I believe we can address these challenges.”PM Modi welcomed world leaders, including US President Joe Biden, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, UK PM Rishi Sunak, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz and others as they arrived to attend the Summit at the Bharat Mandapam venue.

Rishi Sunak and PM Modi warmly greeted each other with Namaste and shook hands. They two leaders also hugged each other as they posed for cameras.

Sunak, accompanied by wife Akshata Murty had arrived in Delhi on Friday. This is Rishi Sunak’s first visit to India as Prime Minister since he assumed the office of Prime Minister of UK in October last year.

India and the UK are bound by strong ties of history and culture, according to the Ministry of External Affairs. India’s multifaceted bilateral relationship with the UK intensified with its upgradation to a Strategic Partnership in 2004. (ANI)

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Iran Israel Rishi

Moon Mission, G20, Cricket WC…Great Year For India: Sunak

UK Prime Minister Rishi Sunak on Friday said 2023 is shaping up to be a great year for India, with the Moon mission, G20 and the cricket World Cup.

“In India, just this year, the moon mission, what an extraordinary success, this G20, which is going to be a huge success and, of course, the Cricket World Cup to come as well. So this is shaping up to be a great year for India,” the British Prime Minister said.

Sunak added that this demonstrates India’s place on the global stage and its importance to geopolitics. “I know everyone here will be incredibly proud of the year that India is having,” he said.

Meanwhile, on his arrival in India on Friday, the UK PM met students and staff at the British Council in Delhi.

Sunak said India’s youth represent its future and India’s trajectory over the coming years and decades inspires confidence.

“The schoolchildren I spent time with today, with Akshata, are so bright, so confident. They are going to ensure that India has an incredibly important role to play in world affairs for years to come. Because their energy, their confidence, their intelligence is fantastic. And it’s an inspiration to see,” the British PM said.

Taking to his official handle on X, Sunak posted, “Before meeting the world leaders of today I’ve been meeting with the world leaders of tomorrow. It’s been fantastic to visit students and staff here at @inBritish- a reflection of the living bridge that exists between the UK and India.”

He further called the little ones “a living bridge between the UK and India”. 

Rishi Sunak arrived for his maiden India visit on Friday to attend the G20 Summit scheduled to be held in New Delhi on September 9 and 10. He was received by Union Minister of State for Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution, Ashwini Choubey.

On his arrival at the national capital, the British PM said the G20 has been a huge success for India and it is the “right country at the right time to be hosting this”.

The UK PM said that he will make sure that the G20, under India’s presidency, achieves success.

“G20 has been a huge success for India. India is the right country at the right time to be hosting this.I feel we are going to have a very good couple of days of deliberations and decisions made,” the British Prime Minister said, adding that the coming two days will witness hectic deliberations.

Referring to the theme of the 18th G20 Summit, ‘One Earth, One Family, One Future’, UK PM said, “I think it’s a great theme. I am an example of the incredible living bridge that Prime Minister Modi described between UK and India.”

Prime Minister Narendra Modi will hold a bilateral meeting with Sunak on Friday, on the sidelines of the G20 Summit, sources said. (ANI)

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G20 Summit Union Ministers

G20 Summit: Union Ministers Assigned Responsibilities To Receive Foreign Delegates

As the national capital has been decked up royally to welcome foreign delegates for the G20 summit, the Centre has assigned responsibilities to different Union ministers of state to welcome the dignitaries, according to sources.

A presentation regarding the same was given to the council of ministers and MOS by the foreign secretary, sources told ANI.

US President Joe Biden will be received by Minister of State VK Singh on September 8 at 6.55 pm (tentative time) while British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak will be received by MOS Ashwini Choubey at 1.40 pm.

Further, according to sources, Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina will be received by MOS Darshana Jardosh at 12:30 pm while MoS Choubey will also receive Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida at 2.15 pm.

The Prime Minister of Italy, Giorgia Meloni, will be received by MOS Shobha Karadlaje at 6:20 am, sources informed further.

China’s Premier Li Qiang will be received by MOS Gen (retd.) VK Singh at 7.45 pm while UAE President HH Shaikh Mohamed Bin Zayed Al Nahyan will be received by Minister of State for Home Affairs Nityanand Rai as he arrives in the national capital at 8 pm. 

Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese will arrive at 6.15 pm and he will be received by Union Minister of State Rajeev Chandrasekhar.

The heads of state of Germany and France will arrive on September 9. German Chancellor Olaf Scholz will be arriving at 8 am and he will be received by MOS Bhanu Pratap Singh Verma.

French President Emmanuel Macron will arrive at 12:35 pm and he will be received by MOS Anupriya Patel.

The countries taking part in the G20 Summit include Nigeria, Argentina, Italy, the AU (represented by Comros), and South Africa. Bangladesh, the United Kingdom, Japan Saudi Arabia, the Republic of Korea, Egypt, Australia, the United States, Canada, China, the U.A.E, Brazil, Indonesia, Turkey Spain, Germany, France, Mauritius, the European Union, and Singapore. (ANI)

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Uk and Australian At Rival Ashes Teams

Did Not Bring My Sandpaper: UK, Aus PMs Take Hilarious Jab At Rival Ashes Teams

UK Prime Minister Rishi Sunak and his Australian counterpart Anthony Albanese engaged in some fun cricket banter on the sidelines of a NATO summit in Lithuanian capital city Vilnius with each leader taking hilarious jibes at the rival country’s cricketing team.

“I am sorry, I did not bring my sandpaper with me,” Sunak told Alabanese on the sidelines of an event sending people in the room into peals of laughter.
The ribbing between Sunak and Albanese had begun during the second Test of the Ashes series that was held at Lord’s in London following the controversial run out of England batter Jonny Bairstow by Alex Carey.

As the two leaders met in Vilinus, Albanese produced a picture of Bairstow’s controversial run-out to poke fun at the England team. The Australian PM also showed a piece of paper with the current score 2-1 to indicate Australia’s current lead in the Ashes.

To this Sunak showed a picture of England players Chris Woakes and Mark Wood hugging after the match-winning shot at Headingley during the third Test. He also made a reference to the 2018 Ball-Tampering Scandal, also known as the ‘Sandpaper Gate’, in which then-Australia captain Steve Smith, vice-captain David Warner and batter Cameron Bancroft received heavy sanctions from Cricket Australia for their involvement in ball tampering.

“I am sorry, I did not bring my sandpaper with me,” said Sunak.

After England’s loss at Lord’s, Ben Stokes, the English skipper said that though Bairstow was run out, he would not like to win the game in the manner the Aussies had done.

“I am not disputing the fact it is out because it is out. If the shoe was on the other foot I would have put more pressure on the umpires and asked whether they had called over and had a deep think about the whole spirit of the game and would I want to do something like that. For Australia, it was the match-winning moment. Would I want to win a game in that manner? The answer for me is no,” Stokes had said after the game.

After the game, Sunak in a statement said, “The prime minister agrees with Ben Stokes. He said he simply would not want to win a game in the manner Australia did.”

Following this, Albanese celebrated Australia’s win in the men’s and women’s Ashes on Twitter.

“I’m proud of our men’s and women’s cricket teams, who have both won their opening two #Ashes matches against England. Same old Aussies – always winning! Australia is right behind @ahealy77, @patcummins30 and their teams and look forward to welcoming them home victorious,” Albanese had tweeted.

Australia is currently leading the series 2-1 and the fourth Test will be played at Manchester from July 19 onwards. (ANI)

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