Ukraine War: France, India Call For Immediate End To “Suffering Of People”

New Delhi: On Wednesday, India and France called for “an immediate cessation of hostilities” in Ukraine. Prime Minister Narendra Modi again stopping short of condemning Russian Invasion.

India has long walked a diplomatic tightrope between the West and Moscow. The nation is unwilling to criticise the latter or vote against it at the United Nations for its activities in Ukraine. India, imports much of its military hardware from Russia.

In a joint statement PM Modi and French President Emmanuel Macron said, “France and India expressed their deep concern over the humanitarian crisis and the ongoing conflict in Ukraine.” Their remarks came after they met in Paris for talks and a working dinner.

“Both countries unequivocally condemned the fact that civilians have been killed in Ukraine, and called for an immediate cessation of hostilities in order for the two sides to come together to promote dialogue and diplomacy, and to put an immediate end to the suffering of the people.”

However, only France condemned “Russian forces’ illegal and unjustified aggression against Ukraine”.

The two countries said they would “act in a coordinated and multilateral manner” to the threat that the conflict might exacerbate a worldwide food crisis, given that Ukraine is one of the world’s top wheat producers.

Before the meeting Macron’s office had said that he would emphasise the consequences of the war to PM Modi for the international order well beyond the European Union, including in Asia.

Officials further said that France wants to “help the Indians diversify their supply” away from Russian arms and energy.

The aim, they said, “is not to leave the Indians with no way out, but to offer solutions”.

PM Modi, is on a European tour.PM Modi told reporters after meeting with German Chancellor Olaf Scholz in Berlin on Monday that “there won’t be any winners in this war and everyone will lose”.

The Elysee said, “Macron has an ‘extremely warm relationship’ with PM Modi, who has visited France three times since 2017, while the French leader went to India in 2018.”

PM Modi invited Macron to India. He invited to deepen cooperation on defence technology and the transition to clean energy.

When PM Modi arrived in the courtyard of the Elysee Palace, where he was also received by Macron’s wife Brigitte, the two men embraced and posed for photographs.

Going into the meeting, officials described France’s relationship with India as “trusting”, and the joint statement reaffirmed the two countries’ desire to strengthen the “strategic Franco-Indian partnership, particularly in the Indo-Pacific”.

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