Starting his two-day visit to Israel and Germany, Prime Minister Narendra Modi left for Tel Aviv on Tuesday morning from New Delhi. Modi is the first ever prime minister to visit the Jewish state.
Official Spokesperson of Ministry of External Affairs, Gopal Baglay tweeted:
— Gopal Baglay (@MEAIndia) July 4, 2017
Modi is expected to reach Israel at 6 pm (IST), The Statesman reported. In a special gesture, Netanyahu will receive Modi when he arrives at Tel Aviv's Ben Gurion Airport. Such a special gesture has been done only for US Presidents, including Donald Trump, and the Pope.
"I begin a historic visit to Israel, a very special partner of India. As the first Indian Prime Minister to do so, I am greatly looking forward to this unprecedented visit that will bring our two countries and people closer. This year, India and Israel are marking 25 years of our diplomatic relations", he had said in a Facebook post on Monday. He had also tweeted:
Earlier on Monday, Benjamin Netanyahu had tweeted that he is honoured to host "his friend" in Israel:
Tomorrow, my friend Indian Prime Minister @NarendraModi will arrive in Israel; India is the largest democracy in the world.
— PM of Israel (@IsraeliPM) July 3, 2017
In Israel, Modi will meet President Reuven Ruvi Rivlin and address the CEOs of the two countries.
He will also visit the Yad Vashem Memorial Museum to honour the memory of the victims of the holocaust that counts among the greatest tragedies in human history and will pay his respects to the courageous Indian soldiers who laid down their lives during the liberation of Haifa in 1918.
The two sides are expected to sign number of agreements in the field of water management, agriculture, science, technology , space and will discuss ways to strengthen people-to-people contact, air connectivity and investments.
The prime minister had said he will have "in-depth talks" with Netanyahu "on the full spectrum of our partnership and strengthening it in diverse fields for mutual benefit.
"We will also have the chance to discuss major common challenges like terrorism", he added.
On the economic side, he had said, "I will join with leading Indian and Israeli CEOs and start-ups to discuss our shared priority of expanding business and investment collaboration on the ground".
On 5 July, Modi will address a massive rally for Indians at Tel Aviv Fairgrounds. The event forms another link between India and Israel. Over 4,000 persons have registered for the event.
"My programme during the visit gives me an opportunity to engage with a cross-section of Israeli society. I am particularly looking forward to interacting with the large vibrant Indian diaspora in Israel that represents an enduring link between our two peoples", Modi had said.
Modi will also meet 26/11 Mumbai terror attack survivor Moshe Holtzberg, who was only two when he was rescued by his Indian nanny Sandra Samuel. Moshe’s father Rabbi Gavriel and mother Rivkah were among eight Israeli nationals killed in the 2008 terror strike.
Modi will then travel to Hamburg for the G-20 Summit being hosted by Germany on 7-8 July. The theme chosen for this year is 'Shaping an Inter-connected World'.
"I look forward to engaging leaders from other G-20 countries on the vital issues affecting our world today that have a bearing on economic growth, sustainable development, and peace and stability," he had said.
"We will review progress on decisions since the Hangzhou Summit last year and deliberate on issues of terrorism, climate, sustainable development, growth and trade, digitalisation, health, employment, migration, women’s empowerment, and partnership with Africa", Modi had added.
With inputs from PTI
Updated Date: Jul 04, 2017 12:31 PM