Ivory Coast confers top award on Anand Sharma (Lead)

January 16th, 2009 - 6:43 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, Jan 16 (IANS) Ivory Coast President Laurent Gbagbo has conferred his country’s highest civilian award on Minister of State for External Affairs Anand Sharma for forging close ties between India and Africa.Sharma, who visited Sierra Leone and Ivory Coast Jan 12-15, was given the award “in recognition of his distinct role in strengthening India’s relationship with Ivory Coast and the African continent”.

Sharma is in charge of Africa in the external affairs ministry. He is credited with playing a key role in the transformation of the India-Africa relations.

In Sierra Leone and Ivory Coast, Sharma discussed issues such as UN reforms, expansion of the UN Security Council and reshaping of the global financial infrastructure with leaders of the two countries.

The two countries expressed solidarity with India. They appreciated “India’s leadership role, its economic strength, and above all, its willingness to share its expertise, technology and development experience” with African countries, the ministry said.

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