Israel PM Netanyahu to embark on a six-day visit to India

Israel PM Netanyahu to embark on a six-day visit to India

During his four-day visit to India next week, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu will seek to strengthen the Jewish state's ties with the Bollywood film industry, according to media reports.

Prime Minister Modi's visit was a very important milestone in that.

At the start of Modi's visit to Israel, the two leaders had repeatedly hugged each other and addressed each other as "friend" several times.

Joint Secretary in External Affairs Ministry, Dr. Bala Bhaskar said, during his week-long tour, the Israeli Prime Minister will also visit Agra, Ahmedabad and Mumbai.

The commitment is in addition to the India-Israel Industrial R&D and Technological Innovation Fund of Dollars 40 million over five years with equal contribution from both sides that has already been agreed between the two sides, deputy Director General of Israel's Foreign Ministry, Gilad Cohen, told PTI. Netanyahu pointed out that apart from meeting with the Russian leader, he would also make a visit to India soon, holding talks with the country's Prime Minister Narendra Modi, while he also meant to meet with US President Donald Trump "in Washington in March, if not sooner".

He refused to give defence trade figures saying "they are not exactly measured like that and as such (there are) no exact figures".

He said aim will be to further boost cooperation in a range of sectors including water, agriculture, scientific research and education. "I am sure you will be updated on that".

There will be a special focus on business and trade during Netanyahu's visit. It was decided that both Prime Ministers should exchange visits. Ties between the two countries have flourished in numerous realms in recent years.

He said Modi and Netanyahu would hold talks on a wide range of matters and "I am sure (the Palestine issue) is also going to come up".

"The Prime Minister's visit to India is the grand finale to the celebrations of 25 years of Growing Partnership between India and Israel". Mr. Modi was the first Indian Prime Minister to have visited Israel after the two countries established diplomatic ties in 1992.

Modi would be accompanying Netanyahu to Gujarat on Wednesday where he will be welcomed in the same fashion as Japan's Prime Minister Shinzo Abe was with a "road show" in Ahmedabad.

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