India-France express serious concerns over Ukraine, global food security and Afghanistan

The two leaders held discussions on the entire range of bilateral issues, including cooperation in defence, space, blue economy, civil nuclear, and people-to-people ties

The two leaders held discussions on the entire range of bilateral issues, including cooperation in defence, space, blue economy, civil nuclear, and people-to-people ties
The two leaders held discussions on the entire range of bilateral issues, including cooperation in defence, space, blue economy, civil nuclear, and people-to-people ties

India-France discuss issues including situation in Ukraine and Afghanistan

In Paris, Prime Minister Narendra Modi and French President Emmanuel Macron held meeting in one-on-one and delegation-level formats where they discussed a wide range of issues including situation in Ukraine and Afghanistan.

They expressed “serious concern” over the Russia-Ukraine conflict. India and France have called for an immediate cessation of hostilities to bring parties together to promote dialogue and diplomacy for finding an immediate end to the suffering of the people.

The two countries called for promoting dialogue and diplomacy in a joint statement issued after talks between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and French President Emmanuel Macron.

The two leaders held discussions on the entire range of bilateral issues, including cooperation in defence, space, blue economy, civil nuclear, and people-to-people ties.

The two leaders also took stock of the regional and global security outlook and discussed ways to work together in making the India-France Strategic Partnership a force for global good.

The Prime Minister’s visit to France “displayed the strong friendship and goodwill not only between the two countries but also between the two leaders”.

Prime Minister Modi invited President Macron to visit India at the earliest opportunity. During the meeting, France reiterates its strong condemnation of the unlawful and unprovoked aggression against Ukraine by Russian Forces.

They “unequivocally” condemned civilian deaths in Ukraine and called for an immediate cessation of hostilities to bring parties together to promote dialogue and diplomacy to find an immediate end to the suffering of the people.

Both countries underlined the need to respect the UN Charter, international law, and the sovereignty and territorial integrity of states. The two leaders discussed the regional and global implications of the conflict in Ukraine and agreed to intensify coordination on the issue.

Further, India and France express deep concern about the current aggravation of global food security and nutrition, already impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, especially in developing countries.

“The two countries are committed to enabling a coordinated, multilateral response to address the risk of aggravated food crisis because of the conflict in Ukraine, including through initiatives such as the Food and Agriculture Resilience Mission (FARM), which aims at ensuring well-functioning markets, solidarity and long-term resilience,” reads a statement.

On Afghanistan, India and France expressed serious concern about the humanitarian situation and violation of human rights and reiterated strong support for a peaceful, secure and stable Afghanistan, emphasizing respect for its sovereignty, unity and territorial integrity and non-interference in its internal affairs. They called for an inclusive and representative government, and respect for the rights of women, children, and minorities.

Both the countries also reaffirmed the UNSC Resolution 2593 (2021) and emphasized zero tolerance for the use of Afghan territory for spreading terrorism in other parts of the world, and agreed to work together in this regard, including at the UN Security Council.

They welcomed the ongoing intense cooperation across all defence domains. Joint exercises (Shakti, Varuna, Pegase, Desert Knight, Garuda) illustrate efforts towards better integration and interoperability wherever possible.

Meanwhile, maritime cooperation between India and France has “reached new levels of trust and will continue through exercises, exchanges and joint endeavours throughout the Indian Ocean”.

PM Modi, who was in Paris for the final leg of his three-nation European tour, discussed with Macron issues of bilateral and mutual interests as well as regional and global developments. Macron held a tete-a-tete with Modi before the delegation-level talks at the Elysee Palace – the official residence of the French President.

[With Inputs from IANS]

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