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External Affairs Minister to visit Dhaka for talks

S. Jaishankar will be in Dhaka to strengthen bilateral ties
S. Jaishankar will be in Dhaka to strengthen bilateral ties

External Affairs Minister S. Jaishankar will visit Dhaka from August 19 to 21 in an effort to strengthen bilateral ties between the two countries.

In his first visit to Bangladesh, External Affairs Minister S. Jaishankar will review projects and discuss bilateral ties. The visit was promulgated by Bangladesh Foreign Minister A.K. Abdul Momen in July after a formal invitation was sent through Dhaka’s envoy in India.

“This is the first visit by the senior Minister, so the expectation on both sides is that he will review the status of all the issues and projects between two sides,” according to a source. Illegal immigration, connectivity, Rohingya crisis, and the Teesta River water issue are some of the issues which might be discussed during the meeting.

The Dhaka visit will witness second high-level interaction between ministers of the two countries. Earlier, Asaduzzaman Khan, Dhaka’s Minister of Interior, met with Minister of Home Affairs Amit Shah in Delhi for a one-on-one discussion on bilateral issues. After the meeting, no joint statement was issued, which triggered speculations that there are differences between the two countries.

The meeting comes at a time when the upcoming publication of the National Register of Citizens in Assam had drawn widespread attention in Bangladesh. However, as per reports, Bangladesh will not raise the issue with India as NRC is an internal matter.

S. Jaishankar is also expected to visit Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina and hold talks with his counterpart Mr Momen. India and Bangladesh have been in talks to ratify the Teesta water agreement since 2011, though the deal has not been finalized yet.

On the other hand, Ms Hasina is expected to raise the Rohingya issue, which she had earlier discussed with Beijing during her visit to the country in July. Bangladesh wishes India to take steps and exert more pressure on Myanmar.

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