Prime Minister Narendra Modi will address the UN General Assembly today.
Modi’s speech is expected to focus on the themes of combating terrorism, climate change, bolstering COVID-19 vaccinations, Indo-Pacific security, and the Sustainable Development Goals. His speech comes after a high-level meeting in Washington with leaders from the Quadrilateral Security Dialogue (the Quad), which involves India, the US, Japan, and Australia. This meeting marked an important consolidation of security ties among Indo-Pacific partners. India views the Quad as a forum that will help secure its strategic position in the struggle with China over the future of the international order.
A key part of Modi’s speech is his push for reforms to the UN Security Council. While India is currently an elected non-permanent member, Modi is pursuing permanent membership with the Security Council, which would give India considerable power in international security deliberations. Achieving this outcome, however, is considered unlikely. In pursuit of these reforms, expect Modi to step up India’s foreign engagements, including offering coherent suggestions on matters that fall outside of India’s traditional purview, such as development in Africa, nuclear proliferation in Iran and North Korea, and the crisis in Afghanistan.
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Rob is an Analyst on the Current Developments team. As a researcher, he specializes in global governance and climate politics, as well as South Asian geopolitics.