Tel Aviv, Jan 18: India attaches highest importance to its ties with Israel, Exterl Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj said as she met Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Monday, the second day of her visit to Israel. “India attaches the highest importance to full development of bilateral ties with Israel,” she said. “Our bilateral cooperation has developed well in a number of areas over the past two decades.” Stating that she was looking forward to her meetings with the Israeli leadership, Sushma Swaraj said she hoped to “discuss the entire spectrum of our bilateral relationship”. “I also hope to get an assessment of the situation in the region,” she said.
Welcoming the Indian minister, Netanyahu said that India and Israel could do a lot more together in areas like cyber, defence and agriculture. He said that Sushma Swaraj’s visit has provided a special opportunity for the foreign ministries of both the countries to discuss various challenges and opportunities. “Israel and India are at the cutting edge of so many areas. The future belongs to those who innovate,” the Israeli prime minister said. “By working together we can do a lot more for our future and the world,” he said, adding that Israel took India as a great friend. Sushma Swaraj, who arrived here on Saturday, went to Ramallah, the administrative capital of Palestine, on Sunday where she held bilateral discussions with Palestinian Foreign Minister Riyad Al Maliki and also called on President Mahmoud Abbas. The Indian minister is being accompanied by the Secretary (East) in the exterl affairs ministry, Anil Wadhwa, and a number of other senior officials of the ministry on her visit to Israel and Palestine. Sushma Swaraj’s visit to Israel comes after the visit of President Prab Mukherjee in October last year. (IANS)