PM Modi travels to France for G7 Summit

He will also be meeting top French leadership.

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Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi began his visit to France today during which he will meet the top French leadership and participate in 45th G7 summit in Biarritz.

Ahead of his France visit PM said, "India and France have excellent bilateral ties, which are reinforced by a shared vision to cooperate for further enhancing peace and prosperity for our two countries and the world at large."

Adding, "Our strong strategic and economic partnership is complemented by a shared perspective on major global concerns such as terrorism, climate change, etc.  I am confident that this visit will further promote our long-standing and valued friendship with France for mutual prosperity, peace and progress."

He will arrive at Paris's Charles de Gaulle Airport at 9 pm IST and hold talks with French President Emmanuel Macron at around 10 pm IST. This will be followed by press statements at 11.15 pm IST. On Wednesday, speaking at his farewell, outgoing French Envoy to India Alexandre Ziegler said, "we have crossed a milestone over the past years. A milestone at the strategic level – that’s obvious. A milestone in the very strong personal rapport that has developed between our two leaders, Emmanuel Macron and Narendra Modi."

This is the 5th time Prime minister Narendra Modi and French President are meeting. PM Modi visited France in 2017 followed by the visit of the French President in 2018 and then meetings on the sidelines of G20 summit in Argentina and Japan in December 2018 and June 2019, respectively. 

Paying homage to Air India Crash Victims

On Friday morning PM Modi will meet Prime Minister of Franch Édouard Philippe and address the Indian diaspora at the UNESCO Headquarters. He will also inaugurate memorials for Indian victims of the air India crash in Nid D'Aigle. 

The memorial commemorates 2 tragic air crashes of Air India flights 245 and 101 in 1950 and 1966. Air India flight 245 crashed into Mont Blanc on 3 November 1950 killing 48 people and 16 years later, almost exactly on the same spot Air India Flight 101 crashed killing 117 passengers.Among the 117 killed onboard AI Flight 101, the chairman of the Indian Atomic Energy Commission and the man who was referred as the "father of the Indian nuclear programme" Dr. Homi Jehangir Bhabha also died.

G7: Modi meets Trump, Boris

Later, when he comes back from his visit to UAE and Bahrain, PM will represent India at the G-7 Summit in Biarritz from 25th to 26th where India is a special invitee by French President Emmanuel Macron. It is after a gap of more than 10 years that India has been invited at the G7 summit, the last time being in 2005 when the then British Prime Minister Tony Blair had invited the then Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh at the Gleneagles summit.

India is "Biarritz partner" country along with Australia, Chile, South Africa, Rwanda, Senegal, Egypt and Burkina Faso. Climate, biodiversity will be the main focus of the 45th G7 summit whose theme is "combating inequality".He is expected to interact with US President Donald Trump and British Prime Minister Boris Johnson at G7.

"I am going to be with PM Modi... I will be with him over a weekend in France", US President Donald Trump had said.During the conversation between PM Modi and British PM Boris Johnson, G7 was discussed. 

“Ahead of the G7, the Prime Minister and Prime Minister Modi agreed on the importance of working together to tackle climate change and other threats to biodiversity", a British government read out on the Modi Boris phone call said, adding, "They looked forward to meeting at the summit this weekend to discuss this and other issues."

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