Indias participation for the first time in the 17th Arab League summit is a reflection of traditionally close relations with Arab countries and the people and manifestation of the special thrust accorded by the present government in India in further strengthening the fraternal bond with the Arab world, minister of state for external affairs E Ahamed told the summit in Algiers.
Mr Ahmad pointed out that the government has appointed an experienced and veteran diplomat, CR Gharekhan, as special envoy to the Arab world.
India is prepared to share with the Arab brethren its experience and expertise in institution and capacity building, governance, science and technology, biotechnology, healthcare and higher education, he said.
The minister reiterated Indias firm support for the just rights of the Palestinian people including the establishment of an independent, viable and sovereign Palestine state and cooperating with the government of Mahmoud Abbas in the task of reconstruction of Palestinian society.
He added that India valued the more than 3.5 million expatriates who live and work in the Arab world harmoniously and are preferred for their skills, productivity and dependability.
The minister, who is leading a high-level delegation to the summit being held at Algiers, conveyed the good wishes of the over one billion Indians to the Arab world and was warmly applauded by the heads of state including the President of Algeria Abdul Aziz Bouteflika and the Arab league secretary general Amr Moussa. India and the 22-member Arab League signed a memorandum of understanding in 2002 that provides the basis for regular and structured consultations and cooperation between the two sides.