India's leadership crucial for SAARC, says Sri Lanka

Colombo, May 28: Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa on meeting new Indian Prime Minister said that he looks forward to working with India in taking forward SAARC ventures, media reported on Wednesday.

During the two leaders' bilateral meeting in New Delhi Tuesday, Rajapaksa stated that India's leadership is crucial for the success of South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation's (SAARC) operations and the countries must focus on common issues that can benefit the region on a global platform, the Daily News reported.

Rajapaksa and Modi also discussed the issue of fishermen of both countries and the measures that can be taken to find a permanent solution in which the views of fishermen can be taken into consideration.

Rajapaksa attended the oath-taking ceremony of Narendra Modi as India's new prime minister Monday and held bilateral talks with him Tuesday.

Besides Rajapaksa, Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, Afghan President Hamid Karzai, Nepal Prime Minister Sushil Koirala, Bangladesh Parliament Speaker Shirin Sharmin Chaudhury, Bhutan Prime Minister Tshering Tobgay, Maldives President Abdulla Yameen and Mauritius Prime Minister Navinchandra Ramgoolam also attended the ceremony.


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