Prime Minister Manmohan Singh has been invited to Washington by President Barack Obama for the first state visit of his Administration and he will be there on November 24 in a sign of "importance" the US attaches to its ties with India.
Obama's invitation to Singh--the first foreign leader to get the honour in the new presidency-- was extended by visiting US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton when she met the Prime Minister here this afternoon on the fifth and concluding day of her visit to India. Obama assumed office on January 20 this year.
"As a sign of importance of this relationship(with India) to the US, I was pleased to extend an invitation to Prime Minister Singh from President Obama inviting Prime Minister Singh to Washington on November 24 for the first state visit of our new administration," Clinton told a press conference here flanked by External Affairs Ministrer S M Krishna.
"At a time when the headlines are filled with challenges the relationship between US and India is a good news story. In our new administration its going to get even better," she added.
Clinton said the invitation demonstrated that the US was committed to a strong relationship with New Delhi.
Former Indian Ambassador to the US Lalit Mansingh said Obama's invitation to Singh to be the first state guest of his administration was a "major development."