11:33 GMT +311 December 2018
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    ‘Quiet Diplomacy’: India Now Wooing Neighbors on the Low

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    Asia & Pacific
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    The Indian government is trying to woo its neighbors silently, with the government maintaining a high level of secrecy in diplomatic parleys and even keeping the visits of top officials a secret.

    New Delhi (Sputnik) — Indian Prime Minister Modi believes in secrecy and consequently pursuing the old school of quiet diplomacy with its neighbors. Top government officials secretly visit neighboring countries for bilateral talks which remain veiled from probing eyes of the media.

    The most recent example is the visit of Indian National Security Advisor Ajit Doval and Foreign Secretary S Jaishankar to Myanmar. The visit was planned secretly and both the officials reached Myanmar last week as part of an expanding engagement with the new leadership there.

    India wants to have a close relationship with the new government in Myanmar and the visit of National Security Advisor and Foreign Secretary is significant in this context.

    Before that Foreign Secretary S Jaishankar quietly visited China on June 16-17. The objective of the visit was to convince Chinese leadership and get support for India's bid for Nuclear Suppliers Group membership.

    Similarly, Foreign Secretary's South Korea visit was also planned secretly. In fact, the Indian government first tested the ‘quiet diplomacy' approach in December of last year when the National Security Advisors of India and Pakistan held a secret meeting in Bangkok and discussed a range of bilateral issues including terrorism.

    That meeting was considered a success and since then quiet diplomacy has become the norm for the Modi government.

    "Quiet diplomacy has been used by various governments and it was frequently used during the Cold War era. Presently back channel diplomacy or track two diplomacy is frequently used by different countries. Modi is resorting to quiet diplomacy to attain the desired objective in a peaceful manner, in fact the government thinks that the forces which are against the government will create hurdles if the diplomatic parleys are publicized," former diplomat Nigam Prakash told Sputnik.




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