Sri Lanka PM to visit India

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New Delhi, Oct 3 (IANS) Sri Lankan Prime Minister Ranil Wickramasinghe will arrive here on Tuesday on a three-day visit.

He will hold bilateral talks with Prime Minister Narendra Modi here on Wednesday, according to the External Affairs Ministry.

His visit assumes significance as India last week pulled out of the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (Saarc) Summit that was scheduled to to be held in Islamabad in November citing Pakistan’s sponsorship of terrorism in the region.

The Indian move came after the September 18 cross-border terror attack on an army garrison at Uri in Jammu and Kashmir that claimed the lives of 19 soldiers.

Following India’s move, Afghanistan, Bangladesh and Bhutan also followed suit citing the same reason, virtually isolating Pakistan in the region.

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Sri Lanka has not pulled out but has said that a Saarc Summit would not be possible without the presence of India.

On Wednesday, Wickramasinghe will also hold meetings with External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj, Road Transport and Highways & Shipping Minister Nitin Gadkari and Minister of State for Petroleum and Natural Gas Dharmendra Pradhan.

Later in the evening, he will call on President Pranab Mukherjee.

The Sri Lankan Prime Minister will attend the opening plenary of the India Economic Summit on Thursday before leaving for Colombo in the evening.



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