First Indian leader to visit Israel welcomed by Netanyahu with open arms

On Tuesday, Narendra Modi became the first Indian head of state to visit Israel.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu shared a warm embrace with his Indian counterpart, Narendra Modi, as the latter landed in Israel earlier on Tuesday.

“Yours is truly a historic visit,” Netanyahu told Modi. “It’s the first time an Indian prime minister is visiting Israel.”

“We receive you with open arms,” he continued. “We love India. We love your culture, your history, your democracy. We view you as kindred spirits in our common quest to provide a better future for our peoples and for our world.”

“We’ve been waiting for you a long time, 70 years in fact,” noted Netanyahu. “The connection between us is natural, so natural that we might ask, ‘What took so long?’”

Modi reciprocated, noting that it is a “special honor for me to be the first Indian prime minister ever to make the revolutionary visit to Israel.”

Israel and India have shared full diplomatic relations with each other for 25 years, begging another question on the part of Netanyahu.

“The ties between our talented, innovative peoples are natural,” Netanyahu added. “So natural that we could ask what took so long for them to blossom?”

“It took a meeting of minds and hearts, it took a commitment of our governments, we have that today,” Netanyahu suggested. “On this visit, your ‘make in India’ initiative meets my ‘make with India’ policy.”

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Last week, Israel’s Cabinet agreed to take steps to further advance the Jewish state’s ties and partnership with India.

Modi conveyed similar feelings with regard to Israel.

“In a world where rapid progress and development is taking place, India considers Israel as one of its most important partners,” Modi stressed.

By: Jonathan Benedek, World Israel News