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India, Bhutan to celebrate golden jubilee of diplomatic ties in 2018

President Ram Nath Kovind, during his meeting with Bhutan King Jigme Khesar Namgyel Wangchuck, also extended an invitation to him to pay a state visit to India during the golden jubilee year, which was accepted by the visiting dignitary.

Reported by: PTI, New Delhi [ Published on: November 01, 2017 23:53 IST ]
Bhutanese King Jigme Khesar Namgyel Wangchuck and Queen
Bhutanese King Jigme Khesar Namgyel Wangchuck and Queen Jetsun Pema at Rashtrapati Bhavan

India and Bhutan have agreed to celebrate 2018 as the golden jubilee of the establishment of formal diplomatic ties between the two neighbours, a statement by the Bhutanese Embassy said. 

President Ram Nath Kovind, during his meeting with Bhutan King Jigme Khesar Namgyel Wangchuck, also extended an invitation to him to pay a state visit to India during the golden jubilee year, which was accepted by the visiting dignitary. 

"The meetings were held in a very warm and cordial atmosphere, reflecting the spirit of mutual trust and understanding that characterise the exceptionally friendly ties between the two countries," the statement said. 

Earlier in the day, Kovind "conveyed deep appreciation for the King of Bhutan's personal involvement and guidance and the support provided by Bhutan in addressing the recent situation in the Dokalam area". 

India and China's troops were locked in a 73-day stand-off in Dokalam, a tri-junction between Sino-India and Bhutanese border near Sikkim, from June 16 this year after Indian Army personnel stopped the Chinese Army from building a road in the disputed area. 

Apart from the president, Wangchuck also held talks with Prime Minister Narendra Modi and External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj. 

Recalling the "unique and historical ties of friendship and understanding" between India and Bhutan, the leaders exchanged views on bilateral cooperation as well as other issues of mutual interest. 

The two sides expressed satisfaction at the "excellent state of bilateral relations" and reaffirmed their commitment to advance the good ties across diverse sectors of cooperation. 

"The visit of Their Majesties to India marks an important milestone in the close and friendly relations between the two countries and has contributed significantly towards further strengthening the profound friendship between India and Bhutan," the statement added. 

The Bhutan's King also conveyed appreciation for the support India provides for Bhutan's socio-economic development, the statement added. 

Vice President M Venkaiah Naidu, senior ministers and officials will also call on the King of Bhutan during the visit from October 31 to November 3. 

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