India, France agree to strengthen cooperation on countering terrorism

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Paris, July 14 (ANI): India and France on Tuesday reiterated their commitment to strengthen cooperation on countering the menace of terrorism.

A statement released after Prime Minister Manmohan Singh's working lunch with French President Nicholas Sarkozy said that there was a "strong convergence of interest on the threats posed by terrorism and measures to counter it."

Both leaders also expressed their satisfaction over the implementation and cooperation between the two countries in the fields of civil nuclear energy,space and defence.

The situation in the subcontinent, regional issues, including Afghanistan, Pakistan, Iran, Iraq, the Gulf and other countries was also discussed, the statement said.

Both leaders also reviewed bilateral ties between India and France. They reiterated that India and France are strategic partners and added that bilateral cooperation extends to education, health, defence, peaceful uses of civil nuclear energy and several other fields.

On the occasion, President Sarkozy said: "India is one of the greatest democracies in the world. India is a major power in the twenty-first century. India's involvement is essential in all global matters."

Both leaders said that this cooperation was a recognition of the closeness and intensity of bilateral ties, which have led to annual leadership summits becoming the norm.

The Indian Prime Minister extended an invitation to the French President to visit India. President Sarkozy said that he hoped to visit India soon. By Smita Prakash (ANI)

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