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SM Krishna begins Lanka visit Thursday

External affairs minister SM Krishna’s three-day tour of Sri Lanka beginning Thursday, the most high-profile visit of an Indian minister, could well have at least three lofty goals: send a message loud and clear that Indo-Lanka relations were moving beyond the Lankan civil war.

world Updated: Nov 25, 2010 01:33 IST
Sutirtho Patranobis

External affairs minister SM Krishna’s three-day tour of Sri Lanka beginning Thursday, the most high-profile visit of an Indian minister, could well have at least three lofty goals: send a message loud and clear that Indo-Lanka relations were moving beyond the Lankan civil war; tell Colombo that New Delhi wanted some visible movement towards politically settling the ethnic issue as Mahinda Rajapaksa was now firmly set for a six-year rule without any political constraint in sight; and subtly but assuredly counter China’s increasing financial and diplomatic clout here.

Economics, of course, would be on the top of the official agenda. Details were already being chalked out for the visit of Indian minister for commerce and industry, Anand Sharma, to further cement economic ties.