Sunday, September 28, 2014

India moves closer to Israel: Indian PM Narendra Modi meets Israeli PM Netanyahu to step-up the diplomatic relations

New York: Prime Minister Narendra Modi met his Israeli counterpart Benjamin Netanyahu here on Sunday in a bid to step-up the diplomatic relations between the two sides.

Prime Minister Modi was accompanied by External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj during the meeting.

The Israeli Prime Minister had earlier congratulated Narendra Modi after the BJP's emphatic win in the Lok Sabha polls via a phone call within 24 hours of the results being declared.

Earlier today, Barak Ravid, the diplomatic correspondent for Israeli newspaper Haaretz, while speaking to ANI described his country's relationship with India as that of a mistress.

"India and Israel have had very strong and strategic relations for many years in cooperation in security, health, and agriculture, but Israel was always the mistress in the sense that the relations were strong but everything was under the carpet and not public," he said.

"What will be interesting in this meeting is if Netanyahu will get an invitation from Prime Minister Modi to come to New Delhi. If this will take place, I think it will be very significant because the last Israeli Prime Minister to visit India was Ariel Sharon more than ten years ago," Ravid added.

Ravid also talked about the close counter-terrorism relations that the two countries share.

"I think that Israel and India are working together on counter-terrorism for many years, especially on radical Islamic terrorism, Al-Qaeda affiliated terrorism and Lashkar-e-Taiba affiliated terrorism," he said.