Saturday, December 2, 2023

MEA Jaishankar’s first foreign visit in 2021; on 3-Day visit to Sri Lanka

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External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar has reached Colombo, Sri Lanka. During his three-day visit, Jaishankar will be discussing bilateral issues and both South Asian and foreign policy with his Sri Lankan counterpart Dinesh Gunawardena. According to the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA), the Foreign Minister of Sri Lanka Dinesh Gunawardena invited Jaishankar to pay an official visit to Sri Lanka from 5-7 January 2021.

This trip will be Jaishankar’s first foreign visit in the new year 2021. On his recently concluded 2-day visit to Qatar, External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar focused on Indian’s return to Qatar. Amid rising sour ties with China and Pakistan, Jaishankar’s visit is seen as a crucial one and might boost up India-Sri Lanka’s economic and diplomatic ties in the coming months. This visit will signify the priorities both countries attach to strengthening their close and cordial relations in all spheres of mutual interest.

This will be the first high-level visit by a foreign official to Sri Lanka this year. This visit assumes much significance as it also comes at a time when some in the ruling Rajapaksa administration is seeking ramifications in their system which was a result of the Indo-Lanka Accord of 1987. Sources believe that eyes are set on big projects and both countries might announce some crucial joint proposed signing.

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During his visit, Jaishankar is scheduled to hold discussions with President Gotabaya Rajapaksa, Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa, and Foreign Minister Dinesh Gunawardena. Big projects announcement and release of Indian fishermen from Lanka’s ports likely on agenda.

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