New Delhi [India]: Hailing the ties with India, Bangladesh Foreign Minister Hasan Mahmud, currently on an official visit to India, said that India is an immediate neighbour, and the relationship is bonded by blood.
While speaking to media, the foreign minister emphasized that India is not only a neighbour but also played a vital role in Bangladesh's independence war.
On Bangladesh PM Sheikh Hasina visiting Indi's future visit, Mahmud said, "You are having elections... In the future, definitely, PM Shiekh Hasina will visit India... India is our immediate neighbour.
We have a wide range of issues. India is not only our neighbour, but it also played a very vital role in our independence war. Indian people and the army shed their blood. Our relationship is bonded by blood. The invitation came from India first. That's why I chose India for my first foreign visit..."
Regarding his meetings with his Indian counterpart, S Jaishankar, the Bangladesh Foreign Minister mentioned that they discussed all issues, including cross-border issues, Rohingya, as well as connectivity.
"We had a very good discussion. We discussed all the issues including cross-border issues, Rohingya issues, security issues, powersharing and connectivity issues. We discussed all of these issues..." he told media.
Meanwhile, when asked about the Pakistan General Elections, scheduled for Thursday, he said that "it is their internal issue."
Earlier, Bangladesh Foreign Minister Hasan Mahmud said that his visit to India will contribute to strengthening the ties between the two 'brotherly' countries, which have excellent ties.
Mahmud, who is on a visit to India from February 7-9, arrived in the national capital in the early hours of Wednesday.
Speaking to ANI, Mahmud said, "We are two brotherly countries. We have excellent ties between the two countries. Any visit of a Bangladesh minister or an Indian minister to Bangladesh definitely strengthens our ties."
The Bangladesh Foreign Minister also thanked EAM Jaishankar and the Indian government for inviting him on Wednesday.
"We value the visit because I have come here on the invitation of the Foreign Minister of India. We are thankful to the Indian Government and especially to the Foreign Minister for inviting me here. Definitely, this visit will contribute to the relationship," he added.
Earlier in the day, FM Mahmud met with National Security Advisor Ajit Doval.
The two leaders held discussions on exploring avenues for enhanced regional cooperation to ensure security and foster greater stability not only within the region but also beyond.
Notably, this is Mahmud's first foreign visit after being sworn into the new Bangladesh government following Sheikh Hasina's historic victory, securing a consecutive fourth term as Prime Minister.
Hasan Mahmud, who hails from Chittagong in the southeast of Bangladesh, served as Deputy Foreign Minister during Sheikh Hasina's second term during 2009-2014.
Hasina's party, the Awami League, secured 223 seats to form the government in the elections held on January 7.
The Awami League government named its 36-member cabinet after President Mohammad Shahabuddin invited them to form the government.