Hours ahead of Prime Minister Narendra Mod's visit to Japan to attend ex-PM Shinzo Abe's state funeral, foreign secretary Vinay Kwatra said this trip is an opportunity for PM Modi to honour the memory of his dear friend and the champion of the India-Japan ties.
Addressing a special briefing on Prime Minister's visit to Japan on Monday, Foreign Secretary said Prime Minister be leaving in a few hours for Japan to attend the state funeral of Abe. "During this visit, the PM will attend the state funeral ceremony at Budokan," he said. During this visit, Kwatra said Prime Minister will also meet his Japanese counterpart Fumio Kishida and Abe's wife.
Representatives from over 100 countries including more than 20 heads of state and heads of government are expected to participate in the state funeral tomorrow, Kwatra said.
"This visit by PM Modi is an opportunity for him to honour the memory of former Abe, who he considered a dear friend and a great champion of the India-Japan relationship," he said.
The foreign secretary said Abe made significant contributions to deepening India-Japan relations, turning a primarily economic relationship into a broad, comprehensive, and strategic partnership, making it pivotal for the two countries and the region's security.
"His famous "Confluence of Two Seas" speech in the Indian Parliament in 2007 laid the ground for the emergence of the Indo-Pacific region as a contemporary political, strategic, and economic reality. Abe's contribution to India-Japan relations was recognized by the conferment upon him of the prestigious Padma Vibhushan in 2021," Kwatra said.
This visit of PM Modi to Japan comes after Kishida's visit to India for the India-Japan Summit meeting in March, and PM Modi's visit to Japan for the Quad Leaders' Summit in May this year.
These meetings underscored the two leaders' commitment towards deepening India-Japan ties, particularly in shaping a post-pandemic regional and global order. This year marks the 70th anniversary of the India-Japan diplomatic relationship.
Kwatra said today, Japan is one of the most trusted and valued strategic partners of India.
"The two sides are committed to strengthening bilateral partnership on key areas of Trade & Investment, Defence and Security, Climate Change, Health Security, Infrastructure, Digital, Industrial Development, Energy, Critical and Emerging Technologies, and Human Resources, among others," the foreign secretary said.
"There is deep convergence in our visions of the Indo-Pacific region and there is close cooperation between our countries on issues of international importance," he added. (ANI)