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Human rights, democracy are universal; extend beyond particular national perspective: India to Blinken on ‘US concerns’


PTI, Jul 25, 2021, 3:11 PM IST

New Delhi: Human rights and democracy are universal and extend beyond a particular national or cultural perspective, government sources here said on Sunday, a day after the US said that Secretary of State Antony Blinken will raise the issues during his upcoming visit to India.

As a long-standing pluralistic society, India is open to engaging those who “now recognise” the value of diversity, the sources said.

“Issues such as human rights and democracy are universal and extend beyond a particular national or cultural perspective. India is proud of its achievements in both domains and is always glad to share experiences,” said a source.

Blinken is scheduled to arrive in India on Tuesday on a two-day visit.

The Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) on Friday said Blinken will meet External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar and National Security Advisor Ajit Doval.

A statement by the US State Department said Blinken will also meet Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

Dean Thompson, the Acting Assistant Secretary of State for South and Central Asian Affairs told reporters on Saturday that Blinken will raise issues of human rights and democracy with Indian officials during the visit.

“With respect to the human rights and democracy question, yes, you’re right; I will tell you that we will raise it, and we will continue that conversation because we firmly believe that we have more values in common on those fronts than we don’t,” Thompson said.

“We believe India is going to be a really important part of continuing those conversations and building strong efforts on those fronts in partnership as we go forward,” Thompson said in response to a question.

It will be Blinken’s first visit to India after assuming charge as the US Secretary of State.

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