Firming up counter-terrorism strategies by cooperating more closely is an area where the India, China, Russia trilateral forum could yield substantive results. A joint communiqué issued after foreign ministers of the three countries met in New Delhi on Wednesday said there could be no justification for any acts of terrorism, and talked of closer coordination against terrorist activity.
"They (India, China, Russia) agreed that there can be no justification for any act of terrorism, irrespective of motivations, wherever and by whosoever committed," the communiqué said. "The sides also agreed to coordinate action against all factors that feed international terrorism, including its financing, illegal drug trafficking and trans-national organised crime."
Foreign Ministers Pranab Mukherjee, Sergei Lavrov and Li Zhaoxing underlined the need for a multi-polar world, emphasising their commitment to multilateral diplomacy through "democratisation" of international relations. The UN would play a central role as an "effective and transparent" body.
Since the trilateral is likely to evoke interest in Washington, the communiqué hastens to reaffirm that "trilateral cooperation was not directed against the interests of any other country."
India will host a meeting of businessmen from the three nations later this year to consider specific initiatives in areas like energy, civil aviation, biotechnology, information technology, pharmaceuticals and financial services, Mukherjee said.
It has also proposed a trilateral seminar on emerging geo-strategic trends with officials and scholars from the three countries taking part.
Li, who nearly usurped the interaction with the media by talking much longer than his two colleagues, said, "we have to work harder to push for greater democratisation of the world order." Speaking to the media after two and a half hours of discussions that continued over lunch, Lavrov said there was need to develop multilateral diplomacy and reestablish the supremacy of the United Nations.
"The Foreign Ministers of Russia and China..understand and support India’s aspirations to play a greater role in the United Nations," the joint communiqué said, falling well short of endorsing India’s candidature for a permanent seat, with veto rights on the UN Security Council.
There was what officials called a "convergence of views" on a range of international issues that came up in the talks, including Afghanistan, Iran, North Korea and the Middle East. The issues needed to be resolved through dialogue and not confrontation.