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Lanka minister hails Sri Lanka, India relations

Press Trust of India  |  Colombo 

Amid India's efforts to secure Presidential pardon for five Indian fishermen sentenced to death in Sri Lanka, a minister today told the parliament that both the countries are enjoying excellent bilateral relations.

"Prime Minister (Narendra) Modi and our President (Mahinda Rajapaksa) spoke on the phone 3 days ago. It was an extremely cordial conversation. The Indian High Commissioner met the President in my presence for a very warm engagement," External Affairs Minister GL Peiris said.

Sri Lanka and India are enjoying excellent bilateral relations, Peiris responded to opposition suggestions that Colombo had erred in its foreign policy on India and thus New Delhi's regard for the island nation had waned.

The minister said India, Sri Lanka and the Maldives are working together in the spirit of regional cooperation in order to ensure regional security.

Peiris further said the participation of Ajit Doval, the Indian National Security Adviser in the international maritime conference hosted by Sri Lanka was another example of better Indo-Lanka relations.

"Not only he will participate, he will make the keynote address", Peiris added.

Galle Dialogue 2014 International maritime conference will be held in the port city of Galle on December 1 and 2.

On Tuesday, India, on behalf of the five Indian fishermen, filed an appeal in the Sri Lankan Supreme Court. The five men were given a death sentence by the Colombo High court on the charges of drug trafficking.

First Published: Fri, November 14 2014. 21:00 IST