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Britain, France support India's UNSC seat bid

Britain and France have voiced their support for India's case for permanent membership of the UN Security Council and favoured deepening of bilateral ties between them.

world Updated: Jun 28, 2010 00:41 IST

Britain and France have voiced their support for India's case for permanent membership of the UN Security Council and favoured deepening of bilateral ties between them.

The backing from countries came during a bilateral meeting the new British Prime Minister David Cameron and French President Nicolas Sarkozy had with Prime Minister Manmohan Singh late on Saturday night ahead of the G20 Summit.

This was the first meeting Singh had with Cameron after his election as British Prime Minister and congratulated him on his victory.

Singh extended to him an invitation to visit India which he accepted and would be coming in July. Cameron had visited India in 2006 as a leader of opposition.

India and Britain had raised their bilateral relationship to a strategic partnership level in 2006 and both the leaders agreed that there was huge potential to expand relationship in trade and human resource development.

Trade between the two countries is estimated at $13 billion and UK is the fourth largest single investor in India.India also has considerable investment in Britain.

The two leaders shared their views on the G20 Summit. Singh told him concerted efforts were needed by all countries to see that global recovery was consolidated as at the moment it was seen to be tentative.

"The British Prime Minister supported India's case for permanent membership of the United Nations Security Council," an external affairs ministry spokesman told reporters.

Prime Minister Singh also had a warm meeting with French President Sarkozy recalling his visit to India in January 2008.

He extended a fresh invitation to him and his wife Carla Bruni to visit India again.

During the meeting Sarkozy said he wanted India to play a critical role in world affairs and not just in G20. He supported India's case for permanent membership of UNSC and its role in counterterrorism.