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Aus Foreign Minister to visit India today

Agencies
Mar 02, 2010 at 11:07am IST

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New Delhi: Australian foreign minister Stephen Smith is arriving in New Delhi on Tuesday to discuss the increasing attacks on Indian students there.

Assurance to India about its keenness to tackle incidents of attacks on Indian students will be high on his agenda.

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The three-day visit comes a month after External Affairs Minister S M Krishna met Smith in London to express concern over the attacks some of them racial.

INDIA SPOTTING: Smith's agenda also includes security setups for the 2010 Games to be held in New Delhi from Oct 3-14.

Smith has said he will brief the Indian government on the actions taken by the authorities to create a safe and rewarding study environment for Indian students in Australia,"

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Also on his agenda is the security preparedness for the Commonwealth Games to be held in New Delhi from October 3-14.

Smith will also watch the Australia-India hockey match today at the ongoing World Cup.

This will be Smith's third visit as foreign minister since 2007.

"I will meet with Krishna, following on from our meeting in London in January. Krishna and I will discuss Australia's and India's close cooperation in trying to solve the recent problems faced by some Indians in Australia," Smith said.

There has been a flurry of visits to India by top Australian authorities, including Prime Minister Kevin Rudd and his deputy Julia Gillard, in the recent past.

The visits were aimed at reassuring India that Australia was a safe destination for Indians to study and work in.

Over 100 cases of attacks on Indians in Australia have been reported since last year. The assaults have affected bilateral ties and have also hurt Australia's education sector.

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