“My priority is to showcase our strengths to the world and further improve relations with other countries,” she told the media after assuming office.

When asked about the outcome of the meeting between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his Pakistani counterpart Nawaz Sharif in New Delhi on Tuesday, Swaraj said the Prime Minister reiterated his view that talks between the two sides cannot take place amid bomb blasts and gun shots.

“We want a good relation with Pakistan and for this terrorism must end first,” she said.

Swaraj, who was received by Foreign Secretary Sujatha Singh, MEA official spokesperson Syed Akbaruddin and other staff at the South Block, further said the Prime Minister expressed the desire that SAARC nations should not bring up contentious bilateral issues and instead become a global force.

62-year-old Swaraj, who is the first woman External Affairs Minister, has also been given the charge of Overseas Indian Affairs.

Swaraj began her political career with RSS student wing ABVP in the 1970s.

She became the youngest Cabinet minister in Haryana government at the age of 25 in 1977. Swaraj took over as the first woman chief minister of Delhi in 1998.

Swaraj, who is the BJP's woman face in and outside the Parliament, has represented Delhi, Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand and Madhya Pradesh in both Houses of Parliament.

She was the Cabinet minister for Information and Broadcasting during the 13-day Atal Bihari Vajpayee Government in 1996.

(JPN)

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