Friday, 24th September 2021

Will be visiting India to strengthen ties: Sri Lanka prez

Colombo, Nov 20 (IANS): New Sri Lankan President Gotabaya Rajapaksa said on Wednesday that he will be visiting India on his maiden overseas visit next week, to strengthen the relationship and discuss regional security, peace and economic development.

Tweeting photos of his meeting with Indian External Affairs Minister S. Jaishankar, who paid an unannounced visit to Colombo on Tuesday and met the new President, Rajapaksa said: “I was pleased to welcome @DrSJaishankar as envoy of Indian Premier Shri @NarendraModi Aand was honored to accept his invitation to visit India as my first overseas visit and to strengthen the relationship and discuss key aspects of regional security, peace and economic development.”

Jaishankar left on a two-day unannounced visit to Sri Lanka on Tuesday and met the new president, as part of India’s effort to strengthen ties with the new government.

After his meeting with Rajapaksa, the EAM tweeted: “A warm meeting with Sri Lanka President @GotabayaR. Conveyed PM @narendramodi’s message of a partnership for shared peace, progress, prosperity & security. Confident that under his leadership, #IndiaSriLanka relations would reach greater heights.”

He also tweeted: “President @GotabayaR has accepted PM @narendramodi’s invitation to visit India on 29th November.”

India is keen to maintain good relations with the Rajapaksa government, which is viewed as Beijing friendly. India lost no time in its outreach by sending Jaishankar to the island nation.

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