MoS Lekhi completes Spain Bilateral Engagement

Sep 17: Minister of State for External Affairs and Culture (MoS), Smt. Meenakashi Lekhi, visited Spain from 14-17 September 2021.

MoS’s visit resulted in a comprehensive review of bilateral relations, especially after the Covid19 hiatus. During the visit, MoS called on the Spanish Foreign Minister, H.E. José Manuel Albares; met her counterpart, the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs, H.E. Ms. Ángeles Moreno Bau; and had consultations with Secretary of State for International Affairs, H.E. Ms. Pilar Cancela Rodriguez.

The Spanish FM and Secretary of State Moreno thanked MoS for India’s approval to source 56 Airbus C295 military transport aircrafts from Spain and said that this agreement qualitatively enhanced relations between the two countries. The situation in Afghanistan was discussed. Both sides agreed to hasten negotiations towards an early conclusion of the Civil Nuclear Agreement. Both sides also acknowledged support to each other during the worst phase of the Covid19 pandemic. The increasing mutual support in election to international bodies was also noted with satisfaction. MoS conveyed that India looked forward to the visit of the Spanish FM to India at a mutually convenient time to prepare for a subsequent visit by the Spanish President to India.

MoS met members of the Spain-India Council Foundation to further economic relations between the two countries. MoS also delivered a talk on India’s overseas Development Assistance programme, during this interaction. In this talk MoS shared India’s philosophy of international development cooperation and the extent of assistance extended to different parts of the world.

MoS visited Casa de la India in Valladolid, a PPP model supported by ICCR. MoS inaugurated the Beatles and India exhibition at Casa de la India. She also met the Board Members of the Casa de la India over a working lunch hosted by the Mayor of Valladolid.

Cooperation with the Cervantes Institute of Spain was discussed with Secretary for International Cooperation along with cooperation in Film making, Sports and Science and Technology. Both sides also congratulated each other for the recent inscription of Kakatiya Temples, as well as Paseo Del Prado and Buen Retiró In the UNESCO Word Heritage List. MoS also briefed the Spanish side on India’s ongoing celebrations to mark 75 Years of its Independence.

MoS engaged with the Indian Diaspora at a Community Reception hosted in her honour. She had a focussed interaction with Indologists, ICCR Alumni, practitioners of Indian performing arts and dances and Indo-philes. MoS also participated in a Yoga Master class at the Indian Embassy along with Spanish Yoga teachers and practitioners.

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