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EAM S Jaishankar meets UK minister Lord Ahmad, discusses bilateral ties

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New Delhi, Mar 15: External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar on Monday held talks with UK minister Lord Tariq Ahmad covering bilateral ties and global cooperation against the backdrop of strain in relations between the two countries following a debate on the farmers' protest in the British Parliament.


The minister for South Asia in the UK Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office also held talks with Foreign Secretary Harsh Vardhan Shringla. "Received UK Minister of State Lord @tariqahmadbt. Discussed our bilateral ties and global cooperation," Jaishankar tweeted.

Lord Ahmad's visit to India came days after New Delhi conveyed to the UK its strong opposition to the "unwarranted and tendentious" discussion in the British Parliament on India's agri reforms, describing it as a "gross interference" in politics of another country.

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Several British MPs held a discussion in their Parliament over issues around the use of force against protesters opposed to agricultural reforms in India.

External Affairs Ministry Spokesperson Anurag Srivastava said the talks between Shringla and Lord Ahmad were comprehensive. "Foreign Secretary @harshvshringla had a comprehensive discussion with @tariqahmadbt Minister of State @FCDOGovUK on issues of bilateral and multilateral cooperation," he said in a tweet.

Lord Ahmad's meetings in Delhi also came on a day Jaishankar said in Rajya Sabha that India will take up with the UK when required the alleged incidents of racism in that country.

The external affairs minister was responding to concerns raised by a BJP MP over racism and cyberbullying that forced Indian-origin Rashmi Samant to resign as the president of the Oxford University Students Union. The minister said India has strong ties with the UK and will take up such matters with great candour when required.

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