Prime Minister Modi receives Israel PM Netanyahu at airport

Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu to arrive in India today meet PM Modi Sushma Swaraj

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, accompanied by 130 businesspeople from over a hundred Israeli companies, flew to India last night for a historic visit.

During his visit, the Prime Minister Netanyahu will hold meetings with President Ram Nath Kovind, Prime Minister Narendra Modi, and Minister of External Affairs Sushma Swaraj.

Several MoUs, including in the field of oil and gas, renewable energy, an amended protocol for airports, cybersecurity, co-production of films and documentaries are expected to be signed between the two sides.

"This visit is an opportunity to enhance cooperation with a global economic, security, technology and tourism power", Netanyahu said in a statement ahead of his visit.

"It is a very great blessing to the state of Israel", he added.

The Indian prime minister will be hosting a private dinner for Netanyahu today evening after his arrival in New Delhi. According to official sources here, the visiting dignitary will arrive in New Delhi on Sunday afternoon and would also visit Teen Murti Haifa Chowk, which has been named after the Israel city of Haifa, as a mark of tribute to the history of India-Israel relations.

They placed wreaths before the three bronze statues, representing the Hyderabad, Jodhpur and Mysore Lancers, who had carried out the victorious assault on the garrisoned town of Haifa and defeated the joint force of Ottomans, Germany and Austria Hungary.

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Netanyahu had promised to take him along on his visit during an emotional meeting between the now 11-year-old boy and Modi in Jerusalem in July.

Shortly after receiving Netanyahu, PM Modi tweeted that the latter's visit will "further cement" bilateral ties - even expressing the sentiment in Hebrew.

In contrast with prime ministerial visits to the USA or Europe, Netanyahu's trip, which will take him to three cities in India, will focus very little on Middle Eastern affairs such as the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

Also, a cancelled defense deal will also be discussed during the visit.

A press release published by the French presidency said this on Saturday, Xinhua news agency reported.

Israel is a major weapons supplier to India, exporting an average of $1 billion of military equipment each year, but Modi wants to end India's status as the world's top defence importer.

"Indian Prime Minister Modi is a close friend of Israel and of mine".

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