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India, U.S. sign agreements on counter-terrorism, clean energy, other matters

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Prime Minister Narendra Modi, of India, addresses the 69th session of the United Nations General Assembly, at U.N. headquarters, Saturday, Sept. 27, 2014. (AP Photo/Richard Drew)

Prime Minister Narendra Modi, of India, addresses the 69th session of the United Nations General Assembly, at U.N. headquarters, Saturday, Sept. 27, 2014. (AP Photo/Richard Drew)

WASHINGTON (Diya TV) — While Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi arrived in the U.S. on Monday, a series of Memorandum of Understandings’ (MoU) and other agreements have been agreed upon by the two nations.

Here is a quick update of what’s been finalized to date:

  • Arrangement between the Multi-Agency Center and Intelligence Bureau of the Government of India and the Terrorist Screening Center of the Government of the United States of America for the exchange of Terrorist Screening Information.

Signed on June 2 in New Delhi, the arrangement primarily serves as an instrument for the two countries to share terrorist information. Shri Rajiv, India’s Union Home Secretary, and Richard Verma, India’s ambassador to the U.S., were the signees.

India and the U.S. shall provide each other access to terrorism screening information through the designated contact points, subject to domestic laws and regulations.The arrangement would enhance the counter terrorism cooperation between India and the U.S.

  • Memorandum of Understanding between the Government of India and the Government of the United States of America to enhance cooperation on Energy Security, Clean Energy and Climate Change.

Signed on June 2 in New Delhi, this MoU seeks to enhance the energy security relationship between India and the U.S. Shri P.K. Pujari, India’s Secretary Ministry of Power, and Richard Verma were the signees.

The objective of the MoU is to enhance cooperation between India and the U.S. on energy security, clean energy and climate change through increased bilateral engagement and further joint initiatives for promoting sustainable growth.

  • Memorandum of Understanding between Government of India and Government of the United States of America to enhance cooperation on Wildlife Conservation and Combating Wildlife Trafficking.

Signed on June 2 in Washington D.C., the MoU serves primarily as a wildlife conservation tool. Shri Arun K. Singh, India’s ambassador to the U.S., and Catherine A. Novelli, Under Secretary of State for Economic Growth, Energy and the Environment, were the signees.

The MoU seeks cooperation in areas such as Wildlife Forensics and Conservation Genetics; Natural World Heritage Conservation and Nature Interpretation; and Conservation Awareness, between India and the US for wildlife conservation and management and combating wildlife trafficking.

  • Memorandum of Understanding between Consular, Passport and Visa Division of the Ministry of External Affairs, Government of India and U.S. Customs and Border Protection, Department of Homeland Security of the United States for the Development of an International Expedited Traveler Initiative.

Signed on June 3 in Washington D.C., seeks to provide expedited travel for pre-approved, low-risk travelers. Ambassador Singh and Kevin K. McAleenan, Deputy Commissioner of U.S. Customs and Border Protection were the signees.

The Global Entry is a U.S. Customs and Border Protection program, which allows expedited clearance for pre-approved, low-risk travelers upon arrival in the United States. After joint scrutiny and clearance by both countries, the approved Indian travelers will be extended the facility of expedited entry into the United States through automatic kiosks at select airports.

  • Technical Arrangement between the Indian Navy and the United States Navy concerning Unclassified Maritime Information Sharing.

Signed last month, this arrangement will allow the sharing of unclassified information between the two countries. Vice Admiral Karambir Singh, Deputy Chief of Naval Staff and Vice Admiral Ted N. Branch, Deputy Chief of Naval Operations for Information Warfare, were the signees.

The Arrangement would allow sharing of unclassified information on White Shipping between India and the U.S. as permitted by respective national laws, regulations and policies, and provides a framework for mutually beneficial maritime information.

 

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Ex-Minneapolis cop charged with George Floyd’s murder

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Minneapolis

MINNEAPOLIS (Diya TV) — One of the Minneapolis police officers fired for their role in the death of George Floyd, Derek Chauvin, was arrested and charged with third-degree murder and manslaughter. Floyd died after he was pinned to the ground by those officers, with Chauvin keeping his knee on Floyd’s neck for nearly nine minutes. The other officers are under investigation, but no charges were announced. The arrest comes after a night of tumult in Minneapolis, where a police station and new housing project were burned down and stores were looted.

Protests that were largely limited to Minneapolis this week have now spread around the nation. From New York to Atlanta, Washington to San Jose, thousands of people outraged over Floyd’s death have taken to the streets. While gatherings started as peace expressions of grief, many of them have turned violent.

President Trump announced there will be a federal investigation over Floyd’s death. But he’s also caused controversy with a tweet quoting George Wallace that said “when the looting starts, the shooting starts,” in reaction to the fires set in Minneapolis.

Ravi Kapur contributed to this report.

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In Oval Office, Trump offers personal mediation to India-China

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Trump

WASHINGTON (Diya TV) —  President Trump, when asked in the Oval Office to comment on the growing India-China border dispute, said he would be happy to mediate any issues between the two nations. Trump added he spoke to Prime Minister Modi and claims Modi “is not in a good mood about what’s going on with China.”

The U.S.-India Strategic Partnership Forum normally holds events at high-end hotels. But this time out, their West Coast Summit brought dignitaries together virtually, featuring speakers like Indian Ambassador to the U.S. Taranjit Singh Sandhu, Adobe CEO Shantanu Narayen and FedEx President Raj Subramaniam to discuss the growing U.S.-India relationship.

The Indian government is allowing Indian Americans with Overseas Citizens of India (OCI) cards to return. They had restricted such travel as part of India’s strict lockdown two months ago.

And bad weather delayed a landmark U.S. trip into space by NASA and SpaceX. It was to be the first space mission with astronauts aboard powered by a private company. Instead, they will aim to lift off once again on Saturday.

Ravi Kapur contributed to this report.

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Somber milestone: 100,000 Americans lost to COVID-19

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COVID-19

WASHINGTON (Diya TV) — Three months into the pandemic, America hit a grim milestone — 100,000 dead in the U.S. at the hands of COVID-19. Cases continue to rise in 14 states, including California. 1.7 million Americans are now afflicted with COVID-19.

In a tweet, President Trump chimed into the growing India-China border dispute, offering to have American officials meditate to keep the peace. China already has ongoing rifts with Taiwan, Hong Kong and Tibet — regions with underlying calls for independence. And there are many asking for American intervention in those matters. We’ll analyze all of these movements.

Peaceful protests have turned into riots in Minneapolis after the senseless killing of George Floyd by police. The four officers involved have been fired. And now Minneapolis’ mayor wants criminal charges for 44 year old Derek Chauvin, the now fired officer who suffocated Floyd to death while onlookers screamed for him to stop.

Ravi Kapur contributed to this report.

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