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Another first for Modi

Our Prime Minister Sh Narendra Modi is slated to become the first ever foreign dignitary to have been invited to a working dinner at the White House by US President Mr Donald Trump, it is further stated that a “red- carpet” welcome awaits our PM at the US Capitol.

“The White House is very interested in making this a special visit. We’re really seeking to roll out the red carpet. In fact, the two (leaders) will have dinner, a working dinner at the White House. This will be the first dinner for a foreign dignitary at the White House under this administration. So, we think that’s very significant,” a senior administration official told reporters at the White House on the eve of Modi’s arrival. They will be having a one-on-one meeting to start with followed by a bi-lateral meeting, after which each is expected to give press statements and then follow it up with a working dinner. Both leaders, being equally charismatic, have a lot in common between themselves, this likeness is likely to play a big role in the formation of strategies for the future relationship between the two countries. “We anticipate that their discussions will be broad-ranging, hitting on a variety of regional and global issues that would seek to advance our common priorities, including fighting terrorism, promoting economic growth and prosperity,” said an official. This time around, the two leaders have ample time to discuss bilateral issues and come to a few very important and strategic decisions. India has already been designated as a major defence partner of the US in the region, “I think we’ll see a concrete expression of this important designation during this visit,” said the senior White House official. “I think we can expect to see some new initiatives on counter-terrorism cooperation,” the official said. Among other things, Modi and Trump will also be discussing global cooperation and things like burden-sharing. Mentioning that India has committed more than USD3 billion in development aid to Afghanistan, the official said the US viewed India’s role in Afghanistan as very positive in helping to stabilise the country and promote democracy there. The two leaders are also expected to discuss on other issues like Energy, Trade, Defence, India’s role in balancing the power equations in the Asia Pacific region, etc.. “I think they’re going to find a lot of common ground in their discussions, both personally and in terms of the strategic partnership,” said the senior administration official.

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