Mohammed bin Salman, Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia’s received a grand reception at the Rashtrapati Bhavan yesterday for his visit to India. According to sources, Crown Prince said on this occasion that he respects Prime Minister Narendra Modi as his elder brother. He said that “we are both brothers. He is big and I am his younger brother.”
Earlier, Saudi Arabian crown prince Mohammed bin Salman arrived on a two-day visit to India on Tuesday night, where Prime Minister Narendra Modi broke the protocol and received him personally at the airport. External affairs spokesman Ravi Kumar said in the tweet that Prime Minister Narendra Modi himself, received the crown prince Mohammed bin Salman, after separating himself from the protocol. The prince of Saudi Arabia has come to India on his first bilateral visit.
‘Pakistan-sponsored terrorism will remain the main issue’
The subject of Pakistan-sponsored terrorism will be a major issue during this visit. At the same time, both the countries will also discuss the rise in defense relations, which include joint naval exercises. Official sources said that the prince who reached Islamabad on Sunday in the beginning of the South Asia tour had returned to Saudi Arabia on Monday. India had objected to his visit to Pakistan from here. The crown prince of Saudi Arabia has come to India on a time when only a few days ago Pakistan-based terror outfit Jaish-e-Mohammed had committed a suicide terror attack on a CRPF convoy in which 40 security personnel were killed.
The delegation level meeting of the two countries is being held in Hyderabad House on Wednesday. A feast will be hosted by the Prime Minister in honor of the Prince of Saudi Arabia. He will meet President Ramnath Kovind at Rashtrapati Bhavan. Official sources said that in the talks between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the crown prince on Wednesday, India will take up the issue of militant groups supported by Pakistan in a very constructive manner.
According to TS Trimurthy, Secretary of Economic Affairs in the Ministry of External Affairs, five agreements are expected to be signed between the two sides in the areas of investment, tourism, housing and information and technology between Saudi Arabia and India. This tour will introduce a new chapter in Indo-Saudi bilateral relations.
Saudi Arabia condemns Pulwama terrorist attack
At the same time, a statement from the ministry said that “Saudi Arabia strongly condemned the terrorist attack on security forces on February 14 in Pulwama. We appreciate their cooperation in the matters of security and counter terrorism. It says that Saudi Arabia has shown a deep understanding of our concerns related to terrorism and has agreed to work with India in dealing with this global evil.”
It has been said in the statement that the cooperation between the two countries in the defense sector is a significant dimension of relations. Both countries are exploring the possibility of joint production and joint exercises, especially joint naval exercises. It said that both the countries are finalizing the establishment of a ‘Strategic Alliance Council’ at the level of the Ministry, which will help in speeding up the strategic relations.
Bilateral trade between India and Saudi Arabia has been $ 27.48 billion in 2017-18. Saudi Arabia is India’s fourth largest trading partner. Saudi Arabia is an important source for India in the field of energy security, which supplies 17% of the requirement for crude oil. Both countries are keen to increase joint alliances in areas such as food security, infrastructure, renewable energy and fertilizer.
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