Published: Sun, January 14, 2018
People | By Leon Thompson

Israel PM Benjamin Netanyahu arrives in India for six-day visit

Israel PM Benjamin Netanyahu arrives in India for six-day visit

A large business delegation is accompanying the dignitary.

Netanyahu is leading a high-profile delegation comprising 130 businessmen from 102 Israeli companies drawn from areas like agriculture, water, cyber security, health care and security, on his trip.

"Modi extended an invitation to Netanyahu to visit India at a mutually convenient time" during a July 5 press conference in Jerusalem.

He reiterated his personal chemistry with PM saying, "Indian Prime Minister (Narendra) Modi is a close friend of Israel and of mine and I appreciate the fact that he will accompany me on extensive parts of my visit".

"A special welcome for a special visit".

Earlier during the opening of the Knesset's (Israeli parliament) winter session last month, Netanyahu said, "In the past year, I have visited all continents besides Antarctica and in January, I will make a reciprocal visit to my dear good friend, Narendra Modi, the Prime Minister of India".

Israel Ambassador Daniel Carmon said, "The Prime Minister's visit to India is the grand finale to the celebrations of 25 years of Growing Partnership between India and Israel". Ezer Weizmann's visit to New Delhi in 1997 was the first by an Israeli President.

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Netanyahu and Modi kicked off the visit with a stop at a memorial to Indian soldiers who fought in World War I to help liberate the Israeli city of Haifa. PM Modi will host Netanyahu for dinner on Sunday night.

The ministry of external affairs called Netanyahu's visit a "fitting culmination to the silver jubilee year of the formal relationship".

The Israeli PM would be formally welcomed Monday morning at Rashtrapati Bhawan.

Netanyahu and Modi are expected to discuss a variety of subjects related to bilateral relations and the global situation.

On Tuesday Israeli PM accompanied by his wife Sara would visit Taj Mahal in Agra and in the evening he will participate in the Raisina Dialogue in the capital. The two leaders will have an 8-km long road from the airport to the Sabarmati Ashram.

Modi will also join Netanyahu during a visit to a Center of Excellence for Vegetables at Vadrad in Gujarat.

In Mumbai, Prime Minister Netanyahu will meet Jewish community leaders and select members of the Indian business community. He will also lay wreath at Taj Hotel Mumbai and pay a visit to Nariman House - Chabad Centre.

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