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Jaishankar refers to India as ‘Vishwa Mitra’ at IORA event

During the opening session of the 23rd Indian Ocean Rim Association (IORA), held as India assumed vice chairship for 2023-2025, External Affairs Minister S. Jaishankar referred to India as a ‘Vishwa Mitra,’ signifying it as the world’s friend and a representative of the Global South. Jaishankar emphasized the importance of the Global South’s focus, which India has successfully brought through the G20, during his speech at the event. As Vice Chair for the next two years, India, known as ‘Vishwa Mitra,’ will collaborate with IORA member states to enhance the institutional, financial, and legal framework of IORA to unlock its full potential.

This statement by Jaishankar marks a unique occasion as a high-ranking cabinet minister used ‘Vishwa Mitra’ to describe India instead of the traditional ‘Vishwa Guru.’ He also invoked the phrase ‘Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam,’ emphasizing the idea of the world being one family as a unifying force for IORA member states.

Jaishankar further highlighted India’s commitment to promoting women-led development and the importance of democratizing technology to bridge the data divide and promote Data for Development in the quest for prosperity within IORA. He affirmed India’s role as a first responder and a net security provider in the Indian Ocean Region, based on its Neighbourhood First policy, the SAGAR outlook, and its approach to the extended neighborhood and Indo-Pacific.

The IORA meeting, attended by 16 ministers, including Jaishankar, will focus on regional cooperation, economic development, and enhancing collaboration among member states. This event aims to strengthen partnerships and dialogue in the Indian Ocean region.


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