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Sheikh Hasina offers Chittagong port to India’s northeast for use during meet with Jaishankar

Hasina's press secretary said the initiative was taken to resume cross-border routes between Bangladesh and India which were stopped during the 1965 India-Pakistan war.

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Dhaka: External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar on Thursday called on Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, who offered her country’s main seaport – Chittagong Port – to India’s northeastern states like Assam and Tripura to enhance connectivity between the two neighbours.

Jaishankar, who arrived here on Thursday on a brief official visit, handed over an invitation to Hasina on her Indian counterpart Narendra Modi’s behalf to visit New Delhi.

“Thank Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina for her warm reception. Conveyed personal greetings of PM @narendramodi. Our bilateral relations are moving from strength to strength under the guidance of the two leaders,” Jaishankar tweeted.

During the meeting, Prime Minister Hasina said that the two countries have to increase the connectivity further, her press secretary Ihsanul Karim told PTI.

She told Jaishankar that the enhanced connectivity was needed for mutual benefit while it would particularly benefit India’s northeastern region in using Bangladesh’s southeastern Chittagong port, Karim said.

“If the connectivity is increased, the Indian northeastern states -like Assam and Tripura- can have access to the seaport in Chattogram,” she said.

The Bangladesh premier noted that initiative were taken to resume cross-border routes between Bangladesh and India which were stopped during the 1965 India-Pakistan war, when Bangladesh was eastern wing of Pakistan.

Karim said a number of bilateral and international issues were discussed during Prime Minister Hasina’s more than half an hour long meeting with Jaishankar.

Jaishankar later held talks with his Bangladeshi counterpart AK Abdul Momen and then jointly briefed the media.

“Dr. Momen and @DrSJaishankar discussed the bilateral issues between Bangladesh and India. They expressed satisfaction about the ongoing Bangladesh-India cooperation, vowed to further strengthen the bilateral ties, stressed on regional stability for socio-economic development as a whole,” the Bangladesh foreign ministry tweeted.

Jaishankar said that during the talks with Prime Minister Hasina he extended Prime Minister Modi’s invitation to her to visit India at the time of her convenience.

“I conveyed (her) that we look forward to her visit to India at a time her convenience,” he said, adding that a number of issues relating to bilateral ties as well as rational and global issues came up as he called on the Bangladesh premier.

Jaishankar, who arrived here on a brief official visit, was received at the Bangladesh Air Force Base Bangabandhu by Foreign Minister Momen.

His visit to Bangladesh is aimed at preparing the grounds for Prime Minister Hasina’s visit to India.

The two countries are expected to fix the date of the 7th Bangladesh-India Joint Consultative Commission (JCC) meeting, which is scheduled to take place in New Delhi.

Jaishankar would leave Dhaka for Bhutan on Friday morning.

This report is auto-generated from PTI news service. ThePrint holds no responsibility for its content.

Also read: Jaishankar arrives in Dhaka to hold talks with Bangladesh counterpart

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