Sri Lankan president Gotabaya Rajapaksa meets Jaishankar

New Delhi: Newly elected President of Sri Lanka Gotabaya Rajapaksa met External Affairs Minister Dr S Jaishankar in New Delhi on Friday.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Sri Lanka President Gotabaya Rajapaksa will hold talks at Hyderabad House in New Delhi today.

Both leaders are likely to discuss areas of cooperation and ways to strengthen existing bilateral relations between the two countries. After holding talks at the Hyderabad House, both leaders will give their joint statement.

The Sri Lankan President will later call on President Ram Nath Kovind.

Rajapaksa arrived in the national capital on Thursday, his first overseas trip since he took over as the island nation’s President. He was received by Union Minister VK Singh.

The Sri Lankan President is leading a high-level delegation which includes Foreign Secretary Ravinatha Aryasinha and Treasury Secretary S R Attygalle.

He is slated to attend a program in the city on Saturday. Later in the evening, Rajapaksa will emplane for Sri Lanka.

The Ministry of External Affairs (MEA), in a statement, had said that the Indian government is ready to work very closely with the new government in Sri Lanka and expressed hope that it will fulfill the aspirations of the Tamil community living in the island nation.

70-year-old Rajapaksa had defeated United National Party (UNP) candidate Sajith Premadasa by more than 13 lakh votes in the recently-concluded presidential elections in Sri Lanka. He is the second member of the Rajapaksa family to become the president.

After the results of the Sri Lankan elections, Modi had congratulated Rajapaksa over the telephone on his electoral victory.

The Prime Minister, in his congratulatory message to Rajapaksa, had said that he looked forward to working closely with him for deepening the close and fraternal ties between the two countries and for peace, prosperity as well as security in the region.