Yoga for peace in Middle East would delight me, says PM Modi in Israel

In an interview to Israel's Channel 2, Prime Minister Narendra Modi laughed when asked if he would invite Benjamin Netanyahu for a yoga session and suggested that the channel could contribute half an hour each day to spreading the knowledge of yoga.

By: Express Web Desk | New Delhi | Updated: July 5, 2017 3:58 pm
Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi (L) hugs his Israeli counterpart Benjamin Netanyahu as they deliver joint statements during their meeting in Jerusalem July 4, 2017. REUTERS

India’s yoga diplomacy has followed its way to Israel with Prime Minister Narendra Modi who is on a three-day visit to the Middle-Eastern country. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu hailed PM Modi’s ‘enthusiasm’ for yoga while the latter professed many Israelis appreciate the ancient Indian practice.

According to Times of Israel, during the two leader’s joint statements in Jerusalem, Netanyahu said: “When I do a relaxing talasana pose in the morning and I turn my head to the right, India is the first democracy that I’ll see.”

He added: “And when Prime Minister Modi does a relaxing pose of vasistasana and he turns his head to the left, Israel is the first democracy that you can see.”

Prime Minister Narendra Modi has focussed on promoting yoga not just on the domestic front but on the international front too and has used India’s soft powers, particularly yoga, to India’s benefit.

In an interview to Israel’s Channel 2, Modi said that when he was asked in a press briefing if yoga could solve the Middle-East’s problems, he had said it would delight him. Before departing to Israel, Modi had said on Monday that a little more time spent on yoga might help solve Middle East’s problems.

In the interview, PM Modi laughed when asked if he would invite Netanyahu for a yoga session and suggested that the channel could contribute half an hour each day to spreading the knowledge of yoga.

Recently, scores of Israelis came out on the streets to practice yoga under the sun on the International Yoga day celebrated on June 21. PM Modi was actively involved in spreading awareness about yoga day on social media and had run an engagement campaign where thousands of people shared their yoga sessions with the PM on Yoga Day on Twitter and other platforms.

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