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Indian PM awarded UAE's highest honour despite Pak rhetoric on Kashmir

UAE was the among the first few countries that despite its traditional ties with Pakistan came forward and described abrogation of Article 370 as an internal matter for India.

, ET Bureau|
Aug 24, 2019, 06.54 PM IST
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Agencies
Narendra Modi
Narendra Modi visited the UAE as Chief Guest at the World Government Summit.
BIARRITZ (FRANCE): Prime Minister Narendra Modi was honoured with the 'Order of Zayed', the UAE's highest civilian award, on Saturday as a mark of appreciation for his efforts to boost bilateral ties between the two nations notwithstanding Pakistan’s efforts to internationalise the Kashmir issue.

The award is instituted in the name of the country's founding father Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan and is being presented to Modi in the year of his birth centenary, which adds even greater significance to it. This is the third visit by Modi to UAE in four years. Modi is visiting UAE and Bahrain between his bilateral summit in Paris and G-7 Summit here.

UAE was the among the first few countries that despite its traditional ties with Pakistan came forward and described abrogation of Article 370 as an internal matter for India.

The award has earlier been extended on several world leaders, including Russian President Vladimir Putin, Queen Elizabeth II and Chinese President Xi Jinping.

"The award in the name of Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, the founding father of the UAE, acquires special significance as it was awarded to Prime Minister Modi in the year of the birth centenary of Sheikh Zayed," Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) said in a statement ahead of his visit.

India-UAE ties were elevated to a Comprehensive Strategic Partnership in 2015. In February 2018, Modi visited the UAE as Chief Guest at the World Government Summit. He first visited UAE as the PM in 2015. The Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi was the chief guest at the Republic Day celebrations in 2017.

India-UAE bilateral trade stands at $60 billion, and the UAE is India's third-largest trade partner. The UAE is also the fourth-largest exporter of crude oil for India and is home to a 3.3 million-strong Indian community.

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