PM to meet Barack Obama in US on Sept 27

The White House meeting between Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and US President Barack Obama will be held as per schedule on September 27.

Washington: The White House meeting between Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and US President Barack Obama will be held as per schedule on September 27, despite the latter being busy due to ongoing Syrian crisis.

While no formal bilateral Obama-Singh meeting has been planned on the sidelines of the G20 Summit in St Petersburg, Russia, the two leaders are expected to interact on its margins this week, officials told a news agency here.

Officials from both the countries yesterday ruled out the possibility of any changes in the pre-scheduled September 27 meeting between Obama and Singh at the White House, due to ongoing Syrian crisis.

Obama has decided to take military action against the Assad regime of Syria and has sought authorisation from the Congress in this regard.

The Congress is expected to vote on it early next week.

While no timeline of the military attack has been announced, Obama is expected to order for military action only after he receives Congressional authorisation.

The United States, according to Secretary of State John Kerry, has reached out to over a 100 countries, of which 34 nations have promised to support in some form.

The Obama Administration has consulted with India on Syria, even though publicly there have been differences between the two.

India insists it will not support any military action against a sovereign nation without the approval of the UN Security Council, while the US President has decided to bypass the world body arguing that its two veto-powered members - Russia and China - are unwilling to hold the Assad regime accountable for alleged use of chemical weapons.

A meeting amidst the Syrian war would be part of the discussion between Singh and Obama when they meet on September 27, preparations for which are in the final stages. Last month, National Security Advisor Shivshankar Menon, during a visit to the US, had told reporters that Singh would be at the White House on September 27 on a working visit.

"I leave confident that preparations are well under way and are headed in the right direction for a very successful visit by the Prime Minister," he had said.

"It`s a working visit. It`s a short visit. But I think, in terms of the substance, it is going to be a good visit," he said, adding that the Prime Minister is scheduled to visit Washington for a day on September 27 for a meeting with President Obama at the White House followed by lunch.

Rest of the logistic are still is being world out.

Obama-Singh meeting "will highlight India`s role in regional security and stability and provide an opportunity" for the two leaders to chart a course toward enhanced trade, investment, and development cooperation between the United States and India, National Security Council Spokesperson Caitlin Hayden said in a statement after Menon met his American counterpart Susan Rice on August 20.