Modi congratulates Sunak on completing 1 year in office

The UK PM affirmed hope of a good performance from the English side during the Test series in India in January next year…reports Asian Lite News

Prime Minister Narendra Modi congratulated his UK counterpart Rishi Sunak on completing one year in office and exchanged views on the raging Israel-Hamas conflict, while also expressing deep concern over terrorism and loss of civilian lives.

In a statement, the Ministry of External Affairs said that during the phone call on Friday, “the leaders reiterated their commitment to continue to strengthen bilateral Comprehensive Startegic partnership, including in the areas trade, investment, emerging technology, defence, security, health and others”.

“They welcomed the progress being made for an early conclusion of a mutually beneficial Free Trade Agreement,” the statement said.

Modi and Sunak also “exchanged views on the developments in the West Asia region and the conflict between Israel and Hamas. Both leaders expressed deep concern at terrorism, worsening security situation and the loss of civilian lives”, the Ministry said.

“They agreed on the need for regional peace, security, stability and continued humanitarian assistance. Both leaders agreed to remain in touch and exchanged greetings for the festive occasion of Deepavali,” it added.

Sunak also congratulated PM Modi on Team India’s strong performance in the ongoing Cricket World Cup.

“Turning to the friendship between the UK and India, the leaders discussed recent progress on Free Trade Agreement negotiations. They agreed on the importance of securing an ambitious deal that benefitted both sides,” the UK government said in a statement.

India and UK are negotiating a Free Trade Agreement, talks for which had begun in 2022. The 12th round of negotiations for the UK-India Free Trade Agreement (FTA) took place from August 8-31 this year.

The UK PM affirmed hope of a good performance from the English side during the Test series in India in January next year.

“The leaders discussed the ongoing Cricket World Cup being held in India. The Prime Minister congratulated Prime Minister Modi on the strong performance of the India team and said he hoped England would have more luck during their test series in India in January,” the statement added.

Notably, India is having a strong run in the ongoing Cricket World Cup and has won all seven matches it has played so far. The defending champions, England on the other hand, have had poor show, winning only one game out of the six they have played.

In the India versus England game at Lucknow, the Men in Blue registered a huge 100-run victory, after India’s pace attack rattled the English batting while defending a below-par total.

PM Modi and PM Sunak also discussed the conflict situation in the Middle East amid the ongoing Israel-Hamas war.

The two leaders condemned Hamas’s attacks on Israel, and reiterated that Hamas “did not represent” the Palestinian people.

They reflected on the need to deescalate tensions in the wider region. PM Sunak also underscored the importance of protecting innocent civilians in Gaza and ensuring aid was able to flow into the country, the statement added.

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