At a virtual interaction with US President Joe Biden held against the backdrop of the war in Ukraine, Prime Minister Narendra Modi tonight said India and the US were ”natural partners” as the world’s two largest and oldest democracies.
Nobody could even imagine a decade back the kind of momentum that the Indo-US relationship has received in the last few years, he said in his opening remarks.
He also informed the US President that he had suggested to Russian President Vladimir Putin to hold direct talks with Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelenskyy to bring an end to the war in Europe.
”I have spoken with Presidents of both Ukraine and Russia over the telephone, several times. I not only appealed to them for peace but also suggested President Putin to hold direct talks with the Ukrainian President,” he said. He also informed President Biden that detailed discussions have been held over Ukraine in the Indian Parliament.
In his remarks, President Biden said the US and India were going to continue their close consultations on how to manage the effects of the Russian war. ”Our continued consultation and dialogue are key to ensuring the US-Indian relationship continues to grow deep and stronger,” he added.
President Biden said he was pleased to have an opportunity to speak to Prime Minister Modi virtually today when the foreign and the defence ministers of the two countries were scheduled to hold the ”2+2″ ministerial dialogue in Washington.
”We have the same concerns about the global challenges we faced during Covid-19, advancing health securities and tracking economic crises,” Biden said.
”We share a strong and growing major defence partnership. The majority of our partnership is a deep connection between our people and our shared values. Our friendship and our shared values. I want to welcome India’s humanitarian support for the people of Ukraine,” he said.
The Indian leader told Biden that India has sent medicines and other relief material to Ukraine and other neighbouring nations. On the demand of Ukraine, India was sending another consignment of medicines soon.
Modi said his interaction with Biden was taking place at a time when the situation in Ukraine was a matter of concern. A few weeks back, over 20,000 Indians were stranded in Ukraine, most of them were young students, he pointed out.
Modi also stated that the recent news of the killing of innocent citizens in Bucha city of Ukraine was very concerning. ”We immediately condemned it and also demanded an impartial probe. We hope that through the talks between Russia and Ukraine, a path for peace will come out,” he said.