Modi cancels visit to Portugal, France

Modi was slated to visit Portugal for the India-European Union (EU) leaders’ summit on 8 May and also France for bilateral talks and meeting with the French President Emmanuel Macron…reports Asian Lite News.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi has called of his visits to Portugal and France in May in the wake of the surge in Covid-19 cases in the country, the Ministry of External Affairs said.

Modi was slated to visit Portugal for the India-European Union (EU) leaders’ summit on 8 May and also France for bilateral talks and meeting with the French President Emmanuel Macron.

“In view of the covid-19 situation, it has been decided, in consultation with the EU and Portuguese leadership, to hold the India-EU Leaders’ Meeting in a virtual format on 8 May 2021,” an Indian foreign ministry statement said on Tuesday.

“The India-EU Leaders’ Meeting in the EU+27 format, the first time that such a meeting is being held, reflects the shared ambition of both sides to further deepen the Strategic Partnership,” it said.

PM Modi may join India-EU summit via video-conference, Portuguese media citing a diplomatic source wrote “We are working with the European institutions and the Government of India to conduct the summit by video-conference, with the EU [leaders] physically present in Portugal”.

Two days ago, UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson had cancelled his visit to India, for the second time in the wake of the surge in number of Covid-19 infections in the country. It is now uncertain whether that summit will happen virtually on 26 April or it will be postponed.

“The two sides will be holding a virtual meeting in the coming days to launch plans for a transformed India-UK relationship,” the MEA said in a statement. “Both leaders attach the highest importance to taking the India-UK partnership to its fullest potential and propose to remain in close touch in this regard and look forward to an in-person meeting later in the year.”

Also Read-Health infra creaks as Covid-19 cases cross 2 million mark

Read More-Rahul Gandhi tests positive for Covid 19