Published On: Tue, Dec 1st, 2015

Modi-Sharif hold ‘casual meeting’ on margins of Paris meet

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Paris:  Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his Pakistani counterpart Nawaz Sharif today had a “casual meeting” on the sidelines of the Climate Summit here, warmly shaking hands before sitting down for a brief chat, amidst a chill in bilateral ties.

Downplaying the chance encounter, External Affairs Ministry Spokesperson Vikas Swarup said, “this was a brief exchange of courtesies in the Leaders Lounge. Prime Minister meets many Heads of State/Government.”

Swarup was responding to a query on the Modi-Sharif meet.

Earlier, the Spokesperson had tweeted, “PM @narendramodi meets PM Nawaz Sharif at COP 21 in Paris,” along with a picture of the two leaders shaking hands.

The meeting is first between the two leaders after July when they met in the Russian city of Ufa and agreed that their National Security Advisors would meet. However, the meeting did not take place amidst a blame game between the two countries.

Sources sought to differentiate the bilateral meeting Modi had with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe from the brief chat the Prime Minister had with Sharif.

“Whether Kuala Lumpur or Paris, Tokyo or New York always time for good friend PM @AbeShinzo,” Swarup tweeted after a meeting between Modi and Abe.

Ahead of the bilaterals, Modi along with other world leaders gathered here for the climate summit attended a special lunch hosted by French President Francois Hollande.

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