Waiting room meeting with Xi, Modi a rare coincidence, says PM Dahal

Kathmandu, October 17

Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal has dubbed his ‘waiting room’ meeting with Chinese President Xi Jinping and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi a ‘rare and pleasant coincidence’.

The PM said he took up this opportunity to raise issues of trilateral cooperation in the socio-economic front, to which both the Chinese and Indian leaders responded ‘very positively’.

“Nepal can benefit greatly from the economic progress of China and India, if there is trilateral cooperation,” Dahal shared the proposal he put forth during informal talks with Xi and Modi with the media upon arrival at TIA from Goa, today.

In Goa, he attended the BRICS-BIMSTEC Outreach Summit, which was organised to enhance cooperation among emerging countries of BRICS as well as BIMSTEC.

Nepal currently chairs the BIMSTEC group.

“After a meeting with Chinese President Xi Jinping, I was waiting at the waiting room to return to the hotel where I was staying, when all of sudden, President Xi entered the room. This was a pleasant surprise. We discussed various bilateral issues and full implementation of deals that Nepal and China had sealed in the past,” he said.

He said he also discussed President Xi’s prospective visit to Nepal, constitution implementation and conclusion of the peace process in Nepal.

According to Dahal, when he had talked one-on-one for around 20 minutes with President Xi, the Indian prime minister entered the room.

“I wanted such a meeting,” he said, terming it a ‘rare and pleasant surprise’.

“I was sitting on a couch between the two leaders — south of Xi and north of Modi — just like Nepal’s geographical position,” he described.

During the meeting, Dahal said he stated that lord Buddha had connected Nepal, China and India culturally for centuries, and new technological innovations had deepened this connection further in recent times.

He clarified it was not a pre-planned meeting. “I stressed that trilateral cooperation would help Nepal benefit from their economic growth and development,” he stated.

Dahal also said he held meetings with leaders of various nations, including South African President Jacob Zuma and the Sri Lankan president.

Meanwhile, he said he held talks with other members of the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation with the objective of creating an environment conducive to holding the postponed 19th SAARC Summit at the earliest.

Dahal, Modi discuss execution of agreements

KATHMANDU: Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal on Sunday met with Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi on the sidelines of the BRICS-BIMSTEC Outreach Summit in Goa. Dahal said he discussed execution of agreements between Nepal and India during his visit to India in mid-September.

Among the subjects discussed was formation of a joint oversight mechanism to speed up implementation of Nepal-India joint venture projects in Nepal, Dahal informed upon arrival at TIA on Monday afternoon.

According a foreign ministry official, the meeting also dwelt on the forthcoming visit of Indian President Pranab Mukherjee, who is due to arrive in Nepal for a three-day state visit on November 2.

“PM Pushpa Kamal Dahal ‘Prachanda’ and I spoke at length about stronger India-Nepal ties during our talks yesterday,” PM Modi tweeted early on Monday.

The two leaders also discussed issues to be raised during the forthcoming Joint Commission meeting, which is being held in New Delhi on October 26 and 27.