India and Sri Lanka are to work on the dates for Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi to visit Sri Lanka, India Today reported.
President Gotabaya Rajapaksa had invited Modi to visit Sri Lanka as the first head of state since Rajapaksa was elected President.
India was fast to move-in to invite the Sri Lankan President to India, making this his first port of call since he was sworn in.
During a press statement on Friday, President Gotabaya Rajapaksa said, “After my election as the President of Sri Lanka, the first official invitation was from His Excellency Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the Government of India. I am certainly very happy to be here because India is our closest neighbour, as well as our long-standing friend. I would avail this opportunity to invite Prime Modi to visit us as the first government to visit Sri Lanka since my election.”
While an invitation has been extended, Government of India is yet to respond to the invite. Sources told India Today TV that both sides will first have to work out the dates.
The two leaders met and had close to an hour-long one-on-one meeting where both, President Rajapaksa and Prime Minister Narendra Modi expressed confidence in building “a strong relationship based on mutual respect and shared values”.
Two key announcements that came out of this visit were about India’s new Lines of Credit (LoC) to Sri Lanka — 1) A $400 million LoC for infrastructure and development and, 2) $50 million special LoC for security and counter-terrorism.
Explaining the counter-terror fund, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said, “On the occasion of Easter this year, terrorists in Sri Lanka launched brutal attacks on the diversity of mankind and the valuable heritage of symbiosis. I have discussed, in detail, with President Rajapaksa for mutual security and to further strengthen mutual cooperation against terrorism. I am happy to announce a special Line of Credit of $50 million to Sri Lanka to combat terrorism.”