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Rajnath Singh in Israel to bolster ties; meets Benjamin Netanyahu
Extending his welcome to India's Home Minister, Mr. Netanyahu said, "Indians and Israelis share the a combination of ingenuity and continuity"

India's Home Minister Mr. Rajnath Singh met the Israeli Prime Minister Mr. Benjamin Natanyahu and held discussions to strengthen India's "very warm" relations with the Jewish state. 

Welcoming Mr. Singh, Mr. Netanyahu said, "Indians and Israelis share the combination of ingenuity and continuity." 

The Home Minister, who is in Israel for his first bilateral visit, earlier tweeted, "India and Israel share very warm & cordial bilateral relations. We look forward to strengthen it further." 

Mr. Singh reschedule his plans after his flight from Monaco was cancelled due to bad weather, but despite the unexpected change in Mr. Singh's plans, the Israeli government rolled out a red carpet in welcoming him with Mr. Netanyahu, Defence Minister Mr. Moshe Yaalon and Public Security Minister Mr. Yitzhak Aharonovich re-adjust their tight schedules to meet him. 

Mr. Singh started his Israel visit by visiting Holy sites in the old city of Jerusalem. 

The Home Minister then left for a helicopter tour of the Jordan Valley and Israel's northern and southern region with National Security Adviser Mr. Yossi Cohen to get a sense of the security situation in the country. 

Cohen had recently met Singh in New Delhi and discussed "common challenges" faced by the two countries and their solutions, emphasising Israel's "willingness to expand cooperation in all fields and in any level." 

"India is a very important ally for us and we view the Home Minister's visit as very significant. We are looking forward to fruitful discussions that will strengthen cooperation between the two countries," a senior Israeli official said. 

It is the first visit of an Indian Home Minister to Israel since June 2000 when L K Advani visited Jerusalem, marking an upsurge in bilateral cooperation. 

Singh's visit comes close on the heels of Prime Minister Narendra Modi's meeting with Netanyahu on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly in New York in September.


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