Thu, 08 Dec 2022

Tokyo [Japan], September 27 (ANI): Prime Minister Narendra Modi held a bilateral meeting with his Japanese counterpart Fumio Kishida on Tuesday and conveyed his deepest condolences on the demise of former Prime Minister Shinzo Abe.

Prime Minister Modi, who landed in Japan on Tuesday morning to attend Abe's state funeral, noted the contributions of the late Japanese PM in strengthening the India-Japan partnership and conceptualizing the vision of a free, open and inclusive Indo-Pacific region.

"The two leaders had a productive exchange of views on further deepening bilateral relations. They also discussed a number of regional and global issues," the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) said in a statement.

Both leaders renewed their commitment towards further strengthening the India-Japan Special Strategic and Global Partnership, and working together in the region and other international groupings.

PM Modi arrived in Japan today amid heightened security measures in the country as dozens of foreign dignitaries are slated to attend the state funeral of former PM Abe who was assassinated in July.

Representatives from over 100 countries including more than 20 heads of state and heads of government are expected to participate in the state funeral.

On Monday, foreign secretary Vinay Kwatra said this trip is an opportunity for PM Modi to honour the memory of his dear friend and a champion of India-Japan ties.

"This visit by PM Modi is an opportunity for him to honour the memory of former PM Abe, who he considered a dear friend and a great champion of the India-Japan relationship," the foreign secretary said while addressing a special briefing.

He said Abe made significant contributions to deepening India-Japan relations, turning a primarily economic relationship into a broad, comprehensive, and strategic partnership, making it pivotal for the two countries and the region's security.

"His famous "Confluence of Two Seas" speech in the Indian Parliament in 2007 laid the ground for the emergence of the Indo-Pacific region as a contemporary political, strategic, and economic reality. Abe's contribution to India-Japan relations was recognized by the conferment upon him of the prestigious Padma Vibhushan in 2021," Kwatra said.

This visit of PM Modi to Japan comes after Kishida's visit to India for the India-Japan Summit meeting in March, and PM Modi's visit to Japan for the Quad Leaders' Summit in May this year.

These meetings underscored the two leaders' commitment towards deepening India-Japan ties, particularly in shaping a post-pandemic regional and global order. This year marks the 70th anniversary of the India-Japan diplomatic relationship. (ANI)

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