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South African Prez Cyril Ramaphosa accepts PM Modi's invitation to Republic Day celebrations 2019

News Nation Bureau | Edited By : Nabanita Chakorborty | Updated on: 01 Dec 2018, 10:58:07 PM
South African Prez Ramaphosa accepts Modi's invitation to Republic Day (Photo tweeted by Narendra Modi - @narendramodi)

New Delhi:

South African President, Cyril Ramaphosa, on Saturday accepted Prime Minister Narendra Modi's invitation to grace India's Republic Day celebrations in 2019. Ramaphosa will be the chief guest at the annual celebration which take place every year at New Delhi's Rajpath before the President of India. The 2019 Republic Day celebrations also mark the 150th birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi and 100 years of 'Madiba'.

'Madiba' refers to July 18, 2019 when India will observe the 100th birth anniversary of global icon Nelson Mandela, also popularly known as Madiba, who died in 2013 at the age of 95.

Taking to Twitter Prime Minister Narendra Modi confirmed the news of South African president's visit to India, saying Ramaphosa's visit will further cement bilateral cement between both the countries.

"Glad to have met President @CyrilRamaphosa. At a time when India is marking the 150th birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi, it is our honour to welcome President Ramaphosa as the Chief Guest for the 2019 Republic Day celebrations. Bapu's close link with South Africa is well known," Modi tweeted.

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"The upcoming visit of President @CyrilRamaphosa, and that too during the special occasion of India's Republic Day will further cement business and people-to-people ties between India and South Africa," the prime minister wrote in another tweet.

Earlier, US President Donald Trump was also invited to be the chief guest for the Republic Day celebrations in India but declined the same citing various "domestic commitments", including his State of the Union address, around that time.

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Both Modi and Ramaphosa were attending the 13th G-20 Summit in Argentina's capital of Buenos Aires. Early on Friday, Modi also met several other world leaders, including Chinese President Xi Jinping, Russian President Vladimir Putin and US President Donald Trump.

During the two-day international summit, India also presented a nine-point agenda to G-20 countries, calling for "strong and active cooperation" among them to comprehensively deal with fugitive economic offenders. Modi presented the agenda in the second session of the G20 Summit on international trade, financial and tax systems.

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First Published : 01 Dec 2018, 10:13:06 PM