WASHINGTON : The US is looking forward to welcoming Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi in Washington, a State Department spokesperson has said, even though he was barred from entering the country less than 10 years ago over massacres of Muslims during his chief ministership of Gujarat. ‘We look forward to welcoming the prime minister to Washington, nothing to announce on timing at this point,’ Deputy Spokesperson Marie Harf said in response to a question at the daily presws briefing. She said she doesn't have more details. Meanwhile, news reports from India said that Modi has accepted Obama's invitation for a meeting in late September and the dates are being finalized. The invitation for the meeting came during the congratulatory call to Modi by Obama after the Lok Sabha election results were out.
‘A date was offered by the US side for the meeting and both the countries are working on it,’ one Indian report said.
Secretary of State John Kerry had conveyed to Indian Ambassador S Jaishankar, the US invitation for Modi. Assistant Secretary of State for South and Central Asia Nisha Desai Biswal, an Indian-American, is scheduled to hold meetings in New Delhi over the next several days establishing the first high-level contact between the Obama administration and the Modi government after the new government assumed power on May 26.