Modi welcomes Israel PM with iconic bear hug

Lester Mason
January 14, 2018

Asked whether purchase of Spike anti-tank guided missiles Z$I*(ATGMs) from Israel through the government-to-government (G-to-G) route will be discussed during Netanyahu's visit, Bhaskar refused to give a direct reply. The last time an Israeli prime minister came to India - a country of 1.3 billion people - was in 2003, when Ariel Sharon arrived but abruptly cut his visit short to return to Israel to deal with a terrorist attack. "We will strengthen the connection between Israel and this important global power".

During his three day visit in Israel, Indian delicacies were specially cooked for PM Modi by an Israeli chef of Indian origin, a personal favourite of Netanyahu's.

Apart from New Delhi, Netanyahu will visit Agra, Ahmedabad and Mumbai during his first visit to India.

Netanyahu and Modi kicked off the visit with a stop at a memorial to Indian soldiers who fought in World War I to help liberate the Israeli city of Haifa.

Prime Minister Netanyahu will hold meetings in New Delhi with President Ram Nath Kovind, Prime Minister Narendra Modi, and Minister of External Affairs Sushma Swaraj.

It is expected that several Memorandum of Understandings (MoUs) will be signed for cooperation in oil and gas, renewable energy, amended protocol for airports, cyber security, and co-production of films and documentaries between the two countries. Modi and he will also visit the Center of Excellence in Vadrad and inaugurate a Center of Excellence for date palms in Bhuj via video conference.

"I will meet there with the prime minister, my friend Narendra Modi, the president of India and many other leaders", Netanyahu said on the tarmac.

The prime minister's entourage includes the largest-ever delegation of Israeli businesspeople with representatives from the agriculture, water technology, cybersecurity, defense, health, and food industries. They will also visit the iCreate innovation campus and center.

A press release published by the French presidency said this on Saturday, Xinhua news agency reported.

Netanyahu's visit comes days after India voted against Israel at the United Nations on the Jerusalem issue.

Modi's standalone visit to Israel in July this year celebrated 25 years of establishment of diplomatic relations between the two countries.

Other reports by Iphone Fresh

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