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Dhaka Tribune

Modi likely to visit Bangladesh

The date is yet to be fixed

Update : 01 Jun 2019, 05:06 PM

As part of his government's "neighbourhood first" policy, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi has said he will visit Bangladesh soon to raise the relationship between the two countries to an "unprecedented new height."

Modi has already accepted the Bangladesh's invitation to visit the country. Dates will be decided through diplomatic channels, according to Press Information Bureau (PIB), India, reports UNB.

However, Modi is set to visit the Maldives in his first trip abroad after being appointed as the Indian prime minister for the second consecutive term.

Requesting anonymity – as the trip has not yet been formally announced – the official said Modi will visit the Maldives on June 8. 

Maldives Foreign Minister Abdulla Shahid tweeted that the Maldives' parliament has adopted a resolution inviting Modi to address the body, during his visit.

President Abdul Hamid, who attended Modi's swearing-in ceremony in New Delhi, conveyed the formal invitation from the government of Bangladesh to the Indian prime minister, when he met Hamid at Hyderabad House, also in New Delhi.

During the meeting, Modi emphasized the importance of taking Bangladesh-India ties to a new level, as "it remains the highest priority to India".

He said this should be done as part of the joint effort to suitably commemorate the 100th birth anniversary of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, in 2020, and the 50th Independence Day of Bangladesh, in 2021. 

Modi noted that the bilateral relationship between the two countries – that was forged during the Liberation War – remains India's highest concern.

He further said, in the last five years, the two countries had demonstrated maturity and patience in resolving a number of complex pending issues, such as the demarcation of the borders. 

During the meeting, both of the state leaders expressed great satisfaction at the excellent state of bilateral relations, according to the Indian Ministry of External Affairs. 

Prime Minister Narendra Modi paid a state visit to Bangladesh in June, 2015 while Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina paid a state visit to India in April, 2017.

Sheikh Hasina was one of the first foreign leaders to congratulate the Indian prime minister after his party's victory at their national polls, thus reflecting the "extraordinarily close and cordial ties" between India and Bangladesh, and the excellent rapport that the two leaders enjoy.

The president conveyed the felicitations instead of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, now in Saudi Arabia, who was unable to travel in person because of a prior commitment.

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