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‘Sri Lanka will rise again’: PM Modi pays tribute to Easter bombing victims

The Indian PM’s visit is seen as a sign of India’s affirmation of solidarity with Sri Lanka in the wake of the deadly Easter terror attacks in April. Over 250 people were killed in the attack claimed by the Islamic State.

india Updated: Jun 09, 2019 17:26 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, New Delhi
PM Modi in Sri Lanka,Sri Lanka blasts,Easter bombings
Prime Minister Narendra Modi shakes hands with Sri Lanka's President Maithripala Sirisena during his welcome ceremony at the Presidential Secretariat in Colombo, Sri Lanka, June 9, 2019. (REUTERS PHOTO)

Prime Minister Narendra Modi arrived in Sri Lanka on Sunday morning becoming the first foreign leader to visit the island nation after the Easter blasts which killed over 250 people.

“I am confident Sri Lanka will rise again. Cowardly acts of terror cannot defeat the spirit of Sri Lanka. India stands in solidarity with the people of Sri Lanka,” PM Modi tweeted.

He was received by his Lankan counterpart Ranil Wickremesinghe at the Bandaranaike International Airport in Colombo.

Watch | PM Modi, first world leader to visit Lanka after bombings; pays tribute to victims

“Happy to be back in Sri Lanka, my third visit to this beautiful island in four years. Share the warmth shown by the people of SL in equal measure. India never forgets her friends when they are in need. Deeply touched by the ceremonial welcome,” Modi tweeted soon after his arrival here.

Also read| PM Modi first world leader to visit Sri Lanka after Easter bombings

During his day-long visit, Prime Minister Modi will hold talks with President Maithripala Sirisena, Prime Minister Wickremesinghe and Leader of the Opposition Mahinda Rajapaksa. A delegation of the main Tamil party - The Tamil National Alliance - is also expected to meet him.

The Indian PM’s visit is seen as a sign of India’s affirmation of solidarity with Sri Lanka in the wake of the deadly Easter terror attacks in April. Over 250 people were killed in the attack claimed by the Islamic State.

Follow live updates of PM Modi’s Sri Lanka visit here

PM Modi arrived in Colombo from Maldives where he held wide-ranging talks with Maldivian President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih on Saturday. India and Maldives signed six agreements to strengthen bilateral cooperation in key areas like defence and maritime security. A coastal surveillance radar system and a composite training centre for the Maldives defence forces were jointly inaugurated by Modi and Solih.

Prime Minister Modi was also conferred with the Maldives’ highest honour “Rule of Nishan Izzuddeen” during his visit.

Also read | ‘India is an experienced player when it comes to tackling terror’: Mahinda Rajapaksa

First Published: Jun 09, 2019 12:29 IST