14 deals signed as UAE aims $75bn investments in India

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi (R) and the Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi General Sheikh Mohammed Bin Zayed Al Nahyan shake hands following a meeting in New Delhi on January 25, 2017. (AFP)
Updated 27 January 2017

14 deals signed as UAE aims $75bn investments in India

NEW DELHI: The UAE and India signed 14 pacts, including defense and energy, as part of groundwork for a strategic partnership between the two countries.
The pacts were signed following a meeting between Sheikh Mohammad bin Zayed Al-Nahyan, crown prince of Abu Dhabi and deputy supreme commander of the UAE Armed Forces, and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi in New Delhi on Wednesday.
The agreements aim at establishing cooperation in defense manufacturing and technology, research, innovation, and cooperation between public and private sector institutions of the two countries.
The two countries will also collaborate in armaments, defense industries and transfer of technology.
In a joint statement issued at the end of the state visit, the two leaders reviewed the progress in realizing the $75 billion target for UAE investments in India’s plans for rapid expansion of next generation infrastructure development, as reported by WAM.
The Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (ADNOC) and the Indian Strategic Petroleum Reserves Ltd. (ISPRL), agreed to establish a strategic crude oil storage in the southern Indian city of Mangalore.
ADNOC will store about 6 million barrels of oil at Mangalore, taking up about half of the site’s capacity, said Sunjay Sudhir, joint secretary for international cooperation at the Indian Oil Ministry.
The agreement with ISPRL, an Indian government-owned company mandated to store crude oil for emergency needs, covers the storage of 5.86 million barrels of ADNOC crude oil in underground facilities, at the Karnataka facility.
Copies of the agreement were exchanged by Dr. Sultan Ahmed Al-Jaber, UAE Minister of State and ADNOC Group CEO, and India’s Petroleum Minister Dharmendra Pradhan, at a ceremony in New Delhi.
Dr. Al-Jaber said: “This agreement, championed by the leadership of both countries, introduces a new strategic energy partnership with India that leverages the UAE and ADNOC’s expertise and oil resources.
“This mutually beneficial partnership will create opportunities for ADNOC to increase its market share in delivering high quality crude to India’s expanding refining industry, while also helping India meet its growing energy demand and safeguard its security.
“India is an important energy market and this storage agreement reinforces ADNOC’s role as one of the world’s most trusted and reliable suppliers of oil. We will utilize the Mangalore facility to not only build on our existing business relationships across India but also to explore new downstream opportunities for ADNOC’s expanding range of refined and petrochemical products,” he added.
Pradhan said: “It is our hope that this strategic agreement will build on the strong bonds of cooperation between our two nations and provide the foundation for a mutually beneficial energy partnership.”


Anger in Lebanon over botched Israeli drone strike on Beirut

Updated 49 min 7 sec ago

Anger in Lebanon over botched Israeli drone strike on Beirut

  • Prime Minister Hariri says Israel drone crash was violation against Lebanon
  • Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah said the incident was 'very dangerous'

BEIRUT:  Anger erupted in Lebanon on Sunday after two Israeli drones crashed in south Beirut in a botched raid that was the most serious military escalation since 2006.

The first device, thought to be a surveillance drone, fell to ground between residential buildings in the Mouawad area after children threw stones at it. Israel is thought to have launched a second armed drone to destroy the first one, but it exploded near the Hezbollah media center in the southern Dahiyeh suburbs.

Lebanese Prime Minister Saad Hariri has described the crash of two Israeli reconnaissance drones over Beirut as a violation and “aggression” against Lebanese sovereignty.

“The new aggression ... constitutes a threat to regional stability and an attempt to push the situation toward further tension,” he said. 

Hezbollah leader Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah said Sunday the incident was "very, very, very dangerous." He vowed to confront and shoot down Israeli drones in Lebanese skies from now on.
 

Damage is seen inside the media office of the Lebanese Hezbollah group in a southern suburb of Beirut, Lebanon, Sunday, Aug. 25, 2019. (AP)

Earlier on Sunday the Lebanese army confirmed that the drones were Israeli, while the Shiite group said one of the aircraft damaged its media centre.
“Two drones belonging to the Israeli enemy violated Lebanese airspace (at dawn)... over the southern suburbs of Beirut. The first fell while the second exploded in the air causing material damage,” an army statement said.
The early morning incident came hours after Israel launched air strikes in neighboring Syria.

The Arab League Secretary-General, Ahmed Aboul Gheit, telephoned Hariri and stressed the country’s rejection and condemnation of the repeated Israeli violations against Lebanese sovereignty.

FAST FACTS

  • The first drone fell to ground between residential building in the Mouawad area.
  • The second device exploded near Hezbollah media center in the Dahiyeh suburbs.
  • Lebanon will file a complaint with the Security Council to condemn the attack.

The Arab League said in a statement that “Aboul Gheit affirmed the Arab League’s full solidarity with Lebanon in this delicate situation and its readiness to play its role in maintaining security, stability and civil peace in Lebanon.”
The statement added that the organization strongly condemns the repeated Israeli violations of Lebanese sovereignty, especially in its airspace, as a flagrant violation of Security Council resolution 1701.
The statement stressed that the Arab League hopes to all concerned parties would not escalate and restrain in order to prevent threatening the security and stability of Lebanon and the region.

Lebanese security stand at the site where an Israeli drone was said to have crashed in a stronghold of the Lebanese Hezbollah group, in Beirut, Lebanon, Sunday, Aug. 25, 2019. (AP Photo/Bilal Hussein)

Lebanon has made frequent complaints to the UN about Israeli planes regularly violating its airspace.
In an apparent admission that the drone attack on Lebanon was an error, Amos Yadlin, a former head of Israeli military intelligence, said neither Iran nor Israel were interested in all-out war. “We’re not there yet,” he said. “But sometimes, someone makes a mistake.”
The Lebanese Army said on Sunday it had cordoned off the drone crash site and military police were investigating the incident under the supervision of the judiciary.
A military source told Arab News: “The Lebanese army did not receive the remnants of the two drones immediately, but is in the process of receiving them from Hezbollah.
“The military investigation will focus on the purpose of the flight of the drones, and their route. It is clear that something went wrong during their flight.”
Hariri received a telephone call from US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo after the incidents. The prime minister’s office said: “Pompeo stressed the need to avoid any escalation and to work with all parties to prevent any form of deterioration.”
Hezbollah spokesman, Mohamed Afif, said one of the two drones was rigged with explosives.
He said a second drone which appeared to have been sent by Israel to search for the first drone less than 45 minutes later exploded in the air and crashed nearby — an explosion heard by residents of the area.

Afif told The Associated Press Sunday: “We did not shoot down or explode any of the drones.”

Hassan Nasrallah will respond in a televised speach later Sunday. (File/AFP)

The drones struck overnight in Beirut where residents reported one large explosion that shook the area, triggering a fire.

Initially they said the nature of the blast in the Moawwad neighborhood was not immediately clear, but said it might have been caused by an Israeli drone that went down in the area amid Israeli air activity in neighboring Syria.
The late-night airstrike, which triggered Syrian anti-aircraft fire, appeared to be one of the most intense attacks by Israeli forces in several years of hits on Iranian targets in Syria.
Lt. Col. Jonathan Conricus, a military spokesman, said Iran’s Revolutionary Guards’ Al Quds force, working with allied Shiite militias, had been planning to send a number of explosives-laden attack drones into Israel.
On Twitter, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu called the attack by Israeli warplanes a “major operational effort.”
Syrian state TV said the country’s air defenses had responded to “hostile” targets over Damascus and shot down incoming missiles before they reached their targets.
In recent days, US officials have said that Israeli strikes have also hit Iranian targets in Iraq.