PM Modi Begins Three-Nation Trip, To Attend G7 Summit In France On Aug. 25-26
Prime Minister Narendra Modi is likely to discuss the Kashmir issue with U.S. President Donald Trump at the G7 Summit in France. (Photo: PTI)

PM Modi Begins Three-Nation Trip, To Attend G7 Summit In France On Aug. 25-26

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Prime MInister Narendra Modi started a three-nation trip on Thursday in an attempt to “strengthen India's relations with time-tested friends and explore new areas of cooperation".

The first stopover on his Aug. 22-26 trip will be France (Aug. 22-23), followed by a visit to the United Arab Emirates (Aug. 23-24) and Bahrain (Aug. 24-25). Over the weekend, he will also attend the G7 Summit in France, where he is likely to have an interaction with U.S. President Donald Trump over the Kashmir issue.

In his departure statement, Modi said his visit to France reflects the strong strategic partnership which the two countries deeply value and share. He will hold bilateral meetings in France, including a summit interaction with President Emmanuel Macron and a meeting with Prime Minister Edouard Philippe. The prime minister will interact with the Indian community as well and dedicate a memorial to the Indian victims of the two Air India crashes in France in the 1950s and 1960s.

On Aug. 25-26, Modi will participate in G7 Summit as Biarritz Partner by invitation of President Macron. He is likely to participate in the sessions on environment, climate, oceans and on digital transformation.

"India and France have excellent bilateral ties, which are reinforced by a shared vision to cooperate for further enhancing peace and prosperity for our two countries and the world at large," the prime minister said.

The strong strategic and economic partnership is complemented by a shared perspective on major global concerns, such as terrorism and climate change. "I am confident that this visit will further promote our long-standing and valued friendship with France for mutual prosperity, peace and progress," Modi said.

On Aug. 23-24, Modi will visit the UAE where he will hold discussions with Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi, Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, on bilateral relations and regional and international issues of mutual interest.

Modi and the Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi will also release a stamp to commemorate the 150th birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi.

"It will be an honour to receive the 'Order of Zayed', the highest civilian decoration conferred by the UAE government, during this visit,” he said. “I will also formally launch RuPay card to expand the network of cashless transactions abroad.”

Frequent high-level interactions between India and the UAE testify their vibrant relations, said the prime minister in the departure statement. The UAE is the third-largest trade partner and fourth-largest exporter of crude oil for India, he said. "The qualitative enhancement of these ties is among one of our foremost foreign policy achievements. The visit would further strengthen India’s multifaceted bilateral ties with the UAE," Modi said.

The prime minister will be in Bahrain on Aug. 24-25. This will be the first ever prime ministerial visit from India to the Kingdom.

"I look forward to discussing with Prime Minister Prince Shaikh Khalifa bin Salman Al Khalifa the ways to further boost our bilateral relations and share views on regional and international issues of mutual interest," said Modi. The prime minister would also be meeting King of Bahrain Shaikh Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa and other leaders.

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