PM Modi "willing to do his utmost" to resolve Russia-Ukraine issue by "peaceful means": Putin

PM Modi "willing to do his utmost" to resolve Russia-Ukraine issue by "peaceful means": Putin

President Vladimir Putin has said that Prime Minister Narendra Modi is "willing to do his utmost" to address the Russia-Ukraine issue through "peaceful means".

Putin's remarks came during a meeting with External Affairs Minister (EAM) S Jaishankar at the Kremlin on Wednesday.

The EAM is on a Russia visit from December 25 to 29 as a part of the ongoing high-level exchanges between the two sides.

Putin emphasised the positive stance of Prime Minister Modi on complex global developments, including the situation in Ukraine.

"We know the stance of Prime Minister Modi and we mentioned that repeatedly on many occasions. Well, his attitude towards some complex developments, including the flashpoints Ukraine," he noted.

The Russian President mentioned that he has advised Modi on the developments in Ukraine multiple times and indicated that further discussions on the matter would take place.

"Many times, I advised him of how things have been going there and I know that he (PM Modi) is willing to do his utmost so that the issue is resolved by peaceful means. So, we probably will delve into that deeper now, and we will give additional information to you on that time," Putin added.

The Russian President also expressed gratitude for the progressing relationship between Russia and India amid global turmoil. "We are gratified to note that despite all the turmoil happening worldwide, the relationship with our true friend in Asia, India has been progressing incrementally," Putin said.

"We have outpaced the growth rates over the past year. We have surpassed all the growth that we had last year over 9 months only," Putin said, attributing the growth to trade in oil, refined products, coal, and high-tech spheres.

He highlighted the multifaceted nature of the Russia-India partnership, extending beyond energy cooperation to encompass technology and other sectors.

"So, definitely, this is due to the trade in oil and refined products in coal. Not only energy, we also operate in high-tech spheres," he noted.

Putin expressed eagerness for Prime Minister Modi to visit Russia, indicating that discussions on relevant and current issues, as well as the prospects of Russian-Indian relations, would take place during the visit.

"Definitely, we will be glad to see our dear friend, Prime Minister Narendra Modi, paying a visit to Russia, we will be able to discuss all the relevant, current issues and talk to the prospects of the Russian and Indian relationship," he also said.

He conveyed warm wishes to Modi and acknowledged the busy political schedule in India, with general elections scheduled for the next year.

"We have a lot an open field of work ahead of us. So, please convey my best, very best wishes to his excellency. And please, tell him that we want to see him, Russia expect him to come although, I know that India next year will have a busy political schedule. The general elections in parliament are scheduled for next year. We wish our friends every success in that and we hope that anyway, no matter what the alignment of political forces would be the traditional conventional friendly ties will persist between our nations," the Russian President also said.

India has often articulated and clarified its stance on the Russia-Ukraine conflict, maintaining that the crisis must be resolved through diplomacy and dialogue. Russia's invasion of Ukraine began in February 2022, resulting in tens of thousands of deaths on both sides.

Amid the raging military conflict, PM Modi has spoken to Putin as well as President Volodymyr Zelenskyy.

PM Modi also met Ukraine President Zelenskyy in Japan during the G7 summit in May 2023.

In the meeting, PM Modi assured that he would do whatever is possible to help resolve the conflict.

"India and I will do whatever we can to resolve the conflict," PM Modi had said.

New Delhi has sought a diplomatic solution to the conflict, with PM Modi telling Russian President Vladimir Putin in September that "now is not an era of war". The remark drew praise from world leaders as well as the global media.

Prime Minister Modi advised President Putin to ensure a "cessation of violence", stressing the need for both sides to return to the talks table.

During a telephonic conversation with Putin, PM Modi underlined that Delhi for now will stick to a path of strategic ambivalence on the Ukraine crisis. This is a pragmatic choice, one that reflects the complexities of a realist world and Delhi's own positions on territorial integrity and sovereignty. (ANI)