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President Trump lauds PM Modi as 'great leader, loyal friend' on his 70th birthday

Meanwhile, Modi and Putin have voiced strong commitment to further strengthen the 'special and privileged strategic partnership' between the two countries during a telephonic conversation when the Russian president called to wish the prime minister to wish him on his 70th birthday. The Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) said President Putin conveyed his greetings on Modi's birthday and the prime minister expressed his warm appreciation for the gesture.

PTI | Washington DC | Updated: 18-09-2020 17:11 IST | Created: 18-09-2020 17:11 IST
President Trump lauds PM Modi as 'great leader, loyal friend' on his 70th birthday

US President Donald Trump greeted Prime Minister Narendra Modi on his 70th birthday, praising him as a "great leader and loyal friend." Trump was among a host of world leaders, including Russian President Vladimir Putin, British Prime Minister Boris Johnson, and German Chancellor Angela Merkel, who wished Modi on his birthday on Thursday and lauded him for strengthening ties with their countries. "I would like to extend best wishes and a very happy 70th birthday to the Prime Minister of India, @narendramodi. Many happy returns to a GREAT LEADER and loyal friend!" Trump tweeted on Thursday.

"Thank you @POTUS @realDonaldTrump for your warm wishes. The friendship between our nations is strong and is a force for good for the entire humanity," Modi responded in a tweet on Friday. President Trump also posted a photograph of him and First lady Melania Trump with Prime Minister Modi at the 'Namaste Trump' event. The two leaders had their hands raised and clenched before a 125,000-strong crowd who had gathered to welcome the US president on his first India visit at Motera cricket stadium in Ahmedabad in February this year.

At the event, Prime Minister Modi had said that a "new history" was being created. Modi and Trump enjoy a "special relationship" and have been working on a number of regional and global issues. They frequently talk over the phone and the countries have had an unprecedented level of cooperation even during the coronavirus pandemic.

India supplied hydroxychloroquine to the US in the early stages of the pandemic and Trump sent ventilators to India. The two countries are also collaborating on the development of vaccines and therapeutics. Meanwhile, Modi and Putin have voiced strong commitment to further strengthen the 'special and privileged strategic partnership' between the two countries during a telephonic conversation when the Russian president called to wish the prime minister to wish him on his 70th birthday.

The Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) said President Putin conveyed his greetings on Modi's birthday and the prime minister expressed his warm appreciation for the gesture. The MEA said Modi thanked Putin for his personal commitment to strengthening bilateral ties, and said he looked forward to welcoming him in India for the next India-Russia summit at a mutually convenient date.

"Both leaders reiterated their strong commitment to further strengthen the 'special and privileged strategic partnership' between India and Russia, and expressed appreciation for the continued momentum in bilateral interactions despite the COVID-19 pandemic," the MEA said. It said they also referred to the "recent productive" visits to Moscow by Defence Minister Rajnath Singh and External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar.

The two ministers travelled to Russia to attend separate meetings of eight-nation bloc Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO). Both Singh and Jaishankar held extensive talks with their Russian counterparts during the visits. The MEA said Modi thanked Putin for the successful Russian chairmanship of the SCO and BRICS (Brazil-Russia-India-China-South Africa) this year.

"He conveyed his eagerness to participate in the forthcoming SCO and BRICS Summit later this year, as well as the Council of SCO Heads of Government to be hosted by India," it said. As chair of SCO and BRICS, Russia is scheduled to hold the summit meetings of the two key groupings later this year. India is set to host the annual summit of Council of SCO heads of government.

According to Russia's official Tass news agency, President Putin and Prime Minister Modi discussed joint effort to counter the spread of the coronavirus. "Certain practical aspects of the bilateral ties were touched upon as well, including the joint effort in fighting the coronavirus infection pandemic," it quoted the Kremlin the press service as saying. The two leaders confirmed mutual commitment to further boost the multifaceted Russian-Indian relations in the framework of the declaration on strategic partnership that turns 20 this year.


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