WION New Delhi, Delhi, India
May 31, 2019, 09.36 PM
PM Narendra Modi will visit Sri Lanka on June 9 in his first foreign visit after taking charge as the prime minister for the second consecutive term.
The news was confirmed by Sri Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena.
During the two day visit PM Modi will be going to the Maldives and Sri Lanka.
Maithripala Sirisena, who was in India for the oath-taking ceremony of PM Modi at Rashtrapati Bhawan said, "PM Modi will be coming to Sri Lanka as part of his visit to the Maldives. As for the information we have received so far, PM Modi will be coming to Sri Lanka on the 9th. "
During the first term of his government, Prime Minister Narendra Modi visited the Island country twice, first in 2015 and then in 2017 when he was the Chief Guest at the International Day of Vesak celebrations in Sri Lanka.
Reacting to the WION's question, during a presser in Delhi on the recently concluded Memorandum of Cooperation (MoC) between India, Sri Lanka and Japan to develop the East Container Terminal (ECT) in Colombo port, Sirisena, said, "it is not an agreement, it is a memorandum of understanding in order to start a discussion about getting into an agreement" and through the discussion "Sri Lanka intends to come to an agreement which is economically and trade wise favourable to Sri Lanka."
The development comes even as China has been trying to increase its influence in South Asia especially with the development of ports like Gwadar in Pakistan and Hambantota port in Sri Lanka.
In 2017, unable to pay its debts, SriLanka handed over the Hambantota to China for a 99 year period lease.
On the recent terror attack in Sri Lanka on April 21 that killed more than 250 people, he said his government was able to bring the situation to normal within three weeks.
He dismissed, reports of any of the nine suicide bombers of Easter Sunday attack visiting India.
He said, "I have not received any reports which say that they have travelled to India. My officers have not reported any connection to India up to now"
India had provided intelligence to Sri Lanka on April 4 but the country failed to act on information. The President later removed the defence secretary and inspector general of police for failing to "inform him" about the intelligence.
The Sri Lankan President had a bilateral meeting with PM Modi on Friday during which the "leaders noted that terrorism and extremism continue to pose threat to humanity", a readout from Ministry of External Affairs said.
PM Modi will be going to the Maldives and Sri Lanka during the 2-day visit.