On Board (Air India One), Apr 13: Developing countries should unite and strengthen their strategic, economic and cultural ties to make their voices heard better at the United Nations, President Pratibha Devi Singh Patil said en route her maiden foreign visit to Latin America. Patil, the first Indian woman president to go abroad, also that there were a lot of similarities of views on issues and problems faced by India and the countries that she is visiting.
During her nearly fortnight-long visits to Brazil, Mexico and Chile, several bilateral Memoranda of Understanding (MOU) are to be inked. She said countries like Brazil, India and South Africa should make their voices heard louder in the international arena, and their long-term objective should be to firm up cooperation on global issues like U.N. reforms, global climate change and expediting trade links between India and Latin American countries.
"I am visiting these distant nations to decrease the distances," she said. Patil also used her interaction with the media onboard Air India One to reveal India's strong stand against terrorism. She said she would like to see the international community firming up treaties to fight the scourge, though admitted that formal agreements existed. It was an issue that needed to be dealt with firmly at the highest fora, she added. E
Emphasizing on the need for strengthening ties with developing countries like Brazil, Mexico and Chile, she described India and these countries as fast growing economies and suggested that their strong relationship could not only enhance trade ties, but also their position in the world.