Indian FM to discuss key issues with Lankan counterpart in Myanmar
Reuters: India’s foreign minister, Salman Khurshid, on Monday (March 03) said that many issues are there to discuss with Sri Lankan counterpart in the ongoing Bay Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation (BIMSTEC).
“This is a BIMSTEC (Bay Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation) gathering. There are lot of bilateral between heads of government and its part of that, there will be a meeting between them as well, they know each other and they are heads of two neighbouring countries and therefore they may have whole lot of things to discuss. Maybe they will discuss progress that we expect to happen in Sri Lanka. Maybe they will discuss how the housing process is going on, or maybe they will discuss what happened in the visit of the Sri Lankan delegations to South Africa,” said Khurshid.
Indian delegation headed by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh is in Myanmar capital Nay Pyi Taw to attend (BIMSTEC).
Earlier in the day, Singh met Myanmar President Thein Sein, during what could be his last foreign visit as PM. He’s in the country for a two-day economic summit and called for a “collective vision” to deal with security challenges.
Singh also met his Nepal counterpart Sushil Koirala on the sidelines of a two-day economic summit in Myanmar.
Singh is likely to use this conference to renew contacts with the seven-nation leaders.
Representatives from India, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Myanmar, Bhutan and Nepal will attend the summit.
India and Sri Lanka, who enjoy strong cultural bonds, have shared a complex diplomatic relationship since the 1980s.
India first trained Sri Lanka’s Tamil Tiger rebels - fighting for a separate Tamil state in the north and east of the island - in the early 1980s but later sent peacekeeping troops to enforce a peace accord.
New Delhi, however, moved away from the island’s bloody conflict after the assassination of former Indian Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi in 1991, blamed on the Tamil Tigers.
Earlier in the day, Singh urged South and East Asian countries for a “collective vision” to deal with security challenges stemming from terrorism as well as international crime and drug trafficking, to bring about peace, stability and development in Asia.