Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's visit to India has been cancelled after an annual summit between the prime ministers of the two countries, scheduled to be held in Guwahati next week, was postponed amid violent protests in the northeast over the Citizenship (Amendment) Act.
"Both sides have decided to defer the visit to a mutually convenient date in the near future," foreign ministry spokesperson Raveesh Kumar tweeted. On Thursday,Bangladesh Foreign Minister AK Abdul Momen and the country's Home Ministercalled off their visits to India in the midst of the agitations in the northeast.
The talks between PM Modi and Mr Abe was due to take place from December 15 to 17.
A Japanese media report had said he may consider canceling the visit amid violent protests. On Wednesday, protesters pulled down hoardings erected in central Guwahati to welcome Mr Abe.
Bangladesh Home Minister Asaduzzaman Khan, who cancelled his visit, was scheduled to visit Meghalaya for an event today.
Guwahati, the planned venue for the three-day summit between Mr Abe and PM Modi, has been engulfed in violent protests over the Citizenship (Amendment) Act.
Japan's Jiji Press had reported that Mr Abe is considering cancelling his trip to India scheduled to begin on Sunday.
Assam has been witnessing massive protests in the last two days with thousands of people hitting the streets defying prohibitory orders to demand scrapping of the Act. On Wednesday, protesters pulled down hoardings erected in central Guwahati to welcome Mr Abe.
Last week, the foreign ministry had announced that the summit between PM Modi and Mr Abe will take place between December 15 and 17. Though the government did announced the venue for the summit, preparations were underway to host it in Guwahati. Asked whether the government is contemplating shifting the venue, Mr Kumar said: "I am not in a position to clarify on it. I have no updates to offer."
BDST: 1900 HRS, DEC 13, 2019