Prime Minister Narendra Modi today landed in Berlin, as the city was preparing for watching the Word Cup Final between Germany and Argentina, an event for which Chancellor Angela Merkel today had to be in Brazil. The Prime Minister’s special Air India flight landed here in cloudy and wet weather. He was received at the airport by Indian Ambassador to Germany Vijay Gokhla and senior officials of the German Government.
The Prime Minister is taking a night halt here on his way to attend the sixth BRICS Summit in Brazilian coastal town of Fortaleza on July 15 along with leaders of member countries of China, Russia, Brazil and South Africa.
Mr Modi has no other official engagement here. Earlier, a meeting between him and Ms Merkel had been planned, but later it was shelved due to her national compulsion to be present in Brazil to cheer up her team.
The Prime Minister is accompanied by Minister of State for Commerce and Industry Nirmala Sitharaman, National Securty Adviser Ajit Doval and Foreign Secretray Sujatha Singh, besides other senior officials. He will leave tomorrow morning for Fortaliza where he will first have bilaterals with President of China Xi Jinping and Russian President Vladimir Putin.
Bilaterals with other BRICS leaders Ms Dilma Rousseff of Brazil and Jacob Zuma of South Africa will take place on July 16, on the last day of the Summit. Mr Modi will also meet a number of leaders of South American countries who have been invited for the event by the Brazilian President.
This is Prime Minister Modi’s first visit overseas. Before departing for Brazil from New Delhi, he had said he was looking forward to his interaction with world leaders and exchanging views with them on matters of regional and national importance.
Mr Modi’s first visit abroad as Prime Minister was to Bhutan last month.
He had said the Summit was taking place at a time when there was political turmoil, conflict and humanitarian crisis in several parts of the world, and persisting weakness and risks in the global economy. Mr Modi said he looked forward to the BRICS Summit as an opportunity to discuss with his BRICS partners how they could contribute to international efforts to address regional crises, address security threats and restore a climate of peace and stability in the world.