You’re the most popular person in Israel, come join my party: PM Bennett to Modi

The PM had a meeting with Naftali Bennett on the sidelines of the COP26 summit on Tuesday during which they reviewed bilateral ties.

PM Modi has invited PM Bennett to India. (Photo: PTI)

Israel’s Prime Minister Naftali Bennett has invited PM Narendra Modi to “come join my party” in a light-hearted conversation on the sidelines of the COP26 climate summit in Glasgow on Tuesday.

A video of their interaction was put out on Twitter by the Office of the Prime Minister of Israel, in which Bennett tells Modi that “you are the most popular person in Israel”. The two are also seen laughing together and shaking hands.

The two prime ministers’ formal meeting was held on Tuesday, in which they reportedly reviewed bilateral ties and discussed expanding cooperation in high-technology and innovation.

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“Glad to have met, yet again, PM @naftalibennett. We had fruitful talks on boosting India-Israel friendship in sectors such as research, innovation and futuristic technologies. These sectors are critical for empowering our youngsters,” PM Modi tweeted. He has also invited Bennett to India as 2022 is set to mark 30 years of establishment of full diplomatic ties between India and Israel.

“I want to thank you. You’re the person who restarted the relationship between India and Israel, which is a deep relationship between two unique civilizations – the Indian civilization, the Jewish civilization – and I know it comes from your heart. It’s not about interests; it’s about a deep conviction that you harbour and we feel it,” Bennett told Modi, according to media reports. “On behalf of all Israeli citizens, we deeply appreciate this whole new approach that will go down in history as something that you brought about. So thank you,” the Israeli premier said.

Foreign secretary Harsh Vardhan Shrigla briefed the media about the meeting, saying: “Next year will be the 30th anniversary of diplomatic relations between India and Israel and in this context, PM Modi invited Naftali Bennett to visit India. Prime Minister Bennett said he had visited India about three times in the past in his capacity as a minister in the government of Israel but he will be delighted to visit India in the first quarter of 2022.”

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