April 22, 2018

UAE decks up with tricolour to welcome Modi

11 February 2018, 05:03 | Rufus Hill

PM Narendra Modi with US President Donald Trump in Manila Philippines

PM Narendra Modi with US President Donald Trump in Manila Philippines

Palestinian President Mahmud Abbas (R) and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi attend a joint press conference after their meeting in the West Bank city of Ramallah on February 10, 2018.

President Abbas received Modi, the first Indian Prime Minister to make an official visit to Palestine, in an official ceremony at the presidential compound, also known as Muqata'a, in Ramallah - the Palestinian seat of government.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi yesterday pledged $40mn for economic development in the Palestinian territories, marking the first-ever visit by an Indian premier to the West Bank.

Meanwhile, US President Donald Trump's Jerusalem move causing loss of mediator's credibility in the Middle East crisis has given a fillip to India's position in the worldwide arena.

It was with PM Modi's stand-alone visit to Israel last July that New Delhi ended this practice of dignitaries who visit Israel, also traveling to Palestine. Nehru had come to visit UN-deployed Indian troops in Gaza in 1960.

"India and Palestine's historic relations have stood the test of time".

Modi is now on his four-day Middle East tour, which includes visits to Palestine, the United Arab Emirates and Oman.

Modi had first visited the UAE as prime minister in August 2015.

This is Modi's second visit to the UAE and is indicative of the new momentum in the UAE-India ties.

. New Delhi voted in the UN General Assembly in December a year ago against US President Donald Trump's unilateral recognition of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.

"We count on India, an global force on a strategic and economic level, to help Palestinians achieve a just peace in our region", Abbas said at the press conference.

The UAE and India share a very important strategic partnership, and there is a lot of potential for the UAE to invest in the Indian defence sector for further growth, India's defence minister Nirmala Sitharaman says.

"We want to see Palestine and Israel living in peace and security", Abbas added. Modi then laid a wreath at the Yasser Arafat Museum in the city, in memory of "one of the world's greatest leaders", as he put it.

He was welcomed in the capital Abu Dhabi by Sheikh Mohammad Bin Zayed Al-Nahyan, the deputy supreme commander of the UAE Armed Forces, local media reported.

Elaborating on India's plans to increase manufacture of defence equipment, export material and components, she said there was scope for defence co-operation via investment from the UAE.

The Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (ADNOC) headquarters, the Emirates Palace, the HBZ stadium and Dubai's Burjkhaleefa & Dubai Frame Frame, are all lit up with colours of the Indian flag.

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