Samarkand: Russian President Vladimir Putin on Friday told Prime Minister Narendra Modi that he fully ”understands the concerns” raised by him while also noting that ”Ukraine wants war” and has refused to be part of negotiations to end several months of military conflict between the two nations. President Putin told PM Modi on the sidelines of the SCO meeting that he was “aware of India’s concerns over the Ukraine conflict” and that “Russia will do everything possible to end it as soon as possible.”
“I know about your position on the conflict in Ukraine. I know about your concerns. I know that you share these concerns and we all want an end to all of these as soon as possible,” Putin said in his televised opening remarks at the meeting.
The Russian President said Ukraine has refused to engage in the negotiation process and it wants to achieve its “objectives on the battlefield militarily.” “We will keep you abreast of everything that is happening over there,” Putin conveyed to PM Modi.
PM Modi earlier pushed Putin to end the conflict in Ukraine, saying “today’s era is not of war” even as he called for finding ways to address the global food and energy security crisis.
PM Modi also underlined the importance of democracy, dialogue and diplomacy during a bilateral meeting with Putin that took place on the sidelines of the annual summit of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) in this Silk Road city.
“Today the biggest worry before the world, especially developing countries, is food security, fuel security, fertilisers. We must find ways to these problems and you will also have to consider them. We will get an opportunity to talk about these issues,” Modi said in his opening remarks.
In response, Putin told PM Modi that Ukraine has refused to engage in the negotiation process and it wants to achieve its “objectives on the battlefield militarily.” “We will keep you abreast of everything that is happening over there,” Putin conveyed to PM Modi.
Following the meeting, PM Modi described the talks as “wonderful”. “Had a wonderful meeting with President Putin. We got the opportunity to discuss furthering India-Russia cooperation in sectors such as trade, energy, defence and more. We also discussed other bilateral and global issues,” he tweeted.
In his opening remarks, President Putin said the ties between India and Russia continued to develop “very rapidly” and both sides are actively engaged on international platforms on key issues. “It is important that we constantly coordinate our positions,” he said.
In his remarks, PM Modi flagged concerns over food security, energy security, and fertiliser supplies and said “we must find ways and you will also have to consider it.” The prime minister said he is thankful to Russia and Ukraine for facilitating the rescue of Indian students from various areas of Ukraine in the initial phase of the conflict.
In the last few months, India has increased the import of discounted crude oil from Russia notwithstanding increasing disquiet over it by several Western powers. India’s crude oil imports from Russia have jumped over 50 times since April and now it makes up for 10 per cent of all crude bought from overseas.
Last month, Russian Ambassador Denis Alipov said Russia appreciates India for not supporting attempts to isolate it in multilateral forums and that bilateral trade between the two countries is on an upswing. India has not yet condemned the Russian invasion of Ukraine and it has been maintaining that the crisis must be resolved through diplomacy and dialogue.
(With Agency Inputs)