Wednesday, January 19, 2022

Russian Presidential Spokesman Hails India, Russia Ties As Both Allies Sign Number Of Military Pacts

Russian presidential spokesman Dmitry Peskov said on Monday that the Indian-Russian relationship had matured, considered their “conflict potential.”

He spoke after Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov met with the top Indian diplomat in New Delhi. They were joined by defense ministers in what is referred to as the “2+2 format.”

“The 2+2 format is really extremely expedient… Now that we have launched this communication track between Moscow and New Delhi it does show that our relationship is indeed mature, especially taking into [account] conflict potential surrounding both countries,” Peskov said.

The spokesman referred to the partnership between the two powers as “special” and “privileged.” Russian President Vladimir Putin is expected to meet with Prime Minister Narendra Modi later on Monday for their first face-to-face talks following the BRICS summit in 2019.

Indian Foreign Minister Subramanyam Jaishankar called the 2+2 negotiations a “productive exchange of perspectives on cross-cutting and inter-related issues.”

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Earlier,  India and Russia have signed a number of agreements, contracts and protocols covering small arms and military cooperation, Indian Defense Minister Rajnath Singh said on Monday, following a meeting with Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu in New Delhi.

“India deeply appreciates Russia’s strong support for India. We hope that our cooperation will bring peace, prosperity and stability to the entire region. Glad that a number of Agreements/Contracts/Protocols were signed pertaining to small arms and military cooperation,” Singh tweeted.

He also called the talks with Shoigu “productive, fruitful and substantial,” adding that “India values its special and privileged strategic partnership with Russia.”

Following the meeting, Shoigu noted that the defense sector is one of the main areas of Russian-Indian cooperation.

“For many years we have been successfully cooperating on many levels. The defense sector is one of the main areas of Russian-Indian cooperation. Despite the difficult epidemiological situation, cooperation between general staff and the armed forces is getting stronger and the exchange of military delegations is expanding,” Shoigu added.

The defense chiefs’ meeting was followed by a series of bilateral meetings between members of the Russian delegation headed by Russian President Vladimir Putin and their Indian colleagues. As part of the visit, the Russian Minister of Foreign Affairs Sergey Lavrov met with Indian External Affairs Minister Subrahmanyam Jaishankar.

In addition, Shoigu, Singh, Lavrov and Jaishankar will participate in a 2+2 dialogue format at 11:30 a.m. local time (06:00 GMT), to discuss bilateral, regional, global political and defense issues.

Putin will meet with Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi later on Monday. The leaders will take stock of the state and prospects of bilateral relations and discuss ways to further improve the strategic partnership between Moscow and New Delhi.

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