EAM Jaishankar meets several leaders, counterparts in Rwanda

EAM Jaishankar meets several leaders, counterparts in Rwanda

External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar on Friday called on Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong here and also met several leaders and his counterparts from the Commonwealth nations to discuss bilateral ties and geopolitical trends.

Jaishankar arrived here on Wednesday on a four-day visit to attend the 26th Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM). He will be representing Prime Minister Narendra Modi at the summit on June 24-25.

“Pleasure to call on PM @leehsienloong of Singapore. An interesting discussion on geopolitical trends,” he said in a tweet.

Jaishankar also called on Presidents of Maldives and Uganda Ibrahim Solih and Yoweri Museveni and discussed the broad-based bilateral cooperation with the two leaders.

He also met his counterparts from the UK, Namibia, Jamaica, Sierra Leone and Cyprus and discussed a range of regional and global issues with them.

“Great to catch up with my British counterpart Foreign Secretary @trussliz. Always useful to exchange notes on the state of the world,” he said in a tweet.

“Nice meeting Namibia Deputy PM and Min. of Intnl. Relations Netumbo Nandi Ndaitwah. We noted the growing cooperation in health, IT, defence and education. Discussed possibilities in fintech and bio-diversity. Looking forward to receiving her in New Delhi,” he said.

“Was a real pleasure to talk to FM @kaminajsmith of Jamaica. Our close bilateral ties were only recently underlined by the visit of the President of India. Our cooperation extends to the multilateral arena including the Commonwealth,” Jaishankar said in a series of tweets.

“Heartwarming to hear from @Prof_DJFrancis of Sierra Leone the high regard for India’s peacekeeping contribution even now. Our cooperation has grown steadily on these foundations, covering mineral prospecting, agriculture, education and health,” he said about his meeting with Foreign Minister of Sierra Leone David John Francis.

Jaishankar said he was delighted to meet his friend and counterpart from Cyprus Ioannis Kasoulides to take stock of the progress the two countries have made.

“India and Cyprus have a special, time-tested friendship. We share similar perspectives on many regional & global issues. Our bilateral cooperation is going from strength to strength,” he said.

The External Affairs Minister also met President of the United Nations General Assembly Abdulla Shahid and described his leadership at the UNGA as “commendable”.

Prime Minister Modi visited Rwanda in July 2018. It was a historic trip as it was the first visit by an Indian Prime Minister to the East African country.

According to the website of the Indian High Commission in Rwanda, there are approximately 3,000 Indian nationals and PIOs (Person of Indian Origin) in Rwanda. Rwanda’s only sugar refinery, the country’s only modern textile mill as well as a soap and cosmetic factory are PIO-owned.

Investments from India are in the tea sector by Assam’s Luxmi Tea, a Kolkata-based company. TVS motorbikes are quite popular in Rwanda. Airtel Rwanda is one of the major players in the telecom sector in Rwanda. Sahasra Lighting is also a key player in the supply of LED lighting and solar panels, it noted.

The theme of the 26th CHOGM Summit is: “Delivering a Common Future: Connecting, Innovating, Transforming”.

The Leaders of the Commonwealth Member States are scheduled to deliberate on issues of contemporary relevance, including global challenges like climate change, food security, health issues.

They are likely to adopt the following four Outcome Documents: CHOGM Communique; Kigali Declaration on Child Care and Protection Reform; Declaration on Sustainable Urbanisation and Commonwealth Living Lands Charter: A Commonwealth Call to Action on Living Lands (CALL), the Ministry of External Affairs said in a statement on Tuesday.

During the visit, Jaishankar is expected to hold several bilateral meetings with his counterparts from Commonwealth member states and other visiting dignitaries, it said.

India is also one of the largest contributors to the Commonwealth and has assisted the organisation with technical assistance and capacity building.

In 2018, India announced the creation of a Commonwealth Window, dedicating USD 50 million for development projects and assistance to developing countries of the Commonwealth.

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