Jordan's Abdullah to Meet Modi in India Amid New Delhi's Mideast Outreach Efforts

Modi has enhanced New Delhi's ties to the Middle East with increasing visits to the region; the two leaders are expected to sign on several agreements

Jordanian King Abdullah being received by Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi upon his arrival in the Indian capital of New Delhi.

Defense, security, investments and regional issues are on the agenda in talks scheduled between King Abdullah of Jordan and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi in New Delhi Thursday, diplomats said.

King Abdullah, who is on a three-day visit to India, was given a ceremonial reception at the Rashtrapati Bhavan or presidential palace. 

King Abdullah was received at the airport Tuesday by Modi, indicating the importance India gives to the relationship with Jordan.

Several agreements are expected to be signed between the two sides including ones in the areas of healthcare and information technology, diplomatic sources said.

King Abdullah, who is accompanied by a high-level business delegation, held a meeting with Indian business leaders Wednesday. 

He also visited the Indian Institute of Technology in New Delhi to explore the potential of collaboration with Jordan.

India, which Israel and its prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu have been touting recently as a newfound Israeli ally, has also recently made diplomatic efforts to enhance its relations with the Palestinians.

Modi paid a visit to the West Bank in mid-February on what his government hailed as a "historic visit to Palestine." His visit in Ramallah followed a stay in Jordan, where he flew in with helicopters supplied by King Abdullah.

In Ramallah, Modi was recieved by Palestinian Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah and later met with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas.

Modi's trip included a visit to the Yasser Arafat museum, "in honor of the departed leader," as it was described by the Indian Foreign Ministry ahead of the visit. Following the visit, Modi tweeted that "Abu Ammar [Afafat] was one of the greatest world leaders. His contribution to Palestine is historical. He was a good friend of India. I paid tributes to him in Ramallah.

The Indian Foreign Ministry said that the purpose of the "historic visit" was to express India's commitment to "deepening ties with Palestine." It stressed that "in the past few years, India has contributed significantly to the Palestinian cause."