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External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj will lead a delegation to Rome to attend the canonisation of Mother Teresa by Pope Francis on September 4.
West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee and Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal have accepted the invitation of Kolkata-based Missionaries of Charity – an NGO set up by the 1979 Nobel Prize winner for social service – to attend the ceremony in the Vatican City.
The Ministry of External Affairs, however, did not disclose whether Mamata and Kejriwal would be part of the delegation. “The external affairs minister will lead the delegation to attend the canonisation ceremony. Other members of the delegation are yet to be decided,” Vikas Swarup, the Ministry of External Affairs Spokesperson, said here on Thursday.
The trip to Rome assumes additional significance as it would be India’s first important official engagement with Italy in four years. Bilateral relations between the two nations almost came to a standstill following the arrest of two Italian marines on the charges of killing two Kerala fishermen, and the Agusta scam. Arrest of the two Italian navy sergeants in February 2012 and charges of bribery while buying AW101 VVIP helicopters from Agusta Westland, a subsidiary of Italian arms major.

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