In New Delhi, Ukraine’s foreign minister Dmytro Kuleba urges India to reconsider ‘evaporating legacy ties’ with Russia

Team India Sentinels Friday 29th of March 2024 05:38 PM

Dmytro Kuleba (L) with S Jaishankar. (Photo: X/@DrSJaishankar)

New Delhi: The Ukrainian foreign minister, Dmytro Kuleba, who arrived here in the capital for a two-day visit to bolster bilateral ties and cooperation between Ukraine and India, on Thursday, said India needs to revisit its ties with Russia. He also cautioned New Delhi of Moscow’s growing cooperation with China, with which India has a longstanding border dispute.

Speaking to a reporter from London’s Financial Times, on Friday, Kuleba said, “The cooperation between India and Russia is largely based on the ‘Soviet legacy’. But this is not the legacy that will be kept for centuries; it is a legacy that is ‘evaporating’.”

He also said, “India and Ukraine have been traditional friends, but I think there is much more that we can do and should do, not only in the interests of our nations, but also in the interest of global development and security architecture,” adding, “We will be looking forward to restoring what had existed before the large-scale invasion of Russia in Ukraine began.”

Even as the war between Russia and Ukraine has entered the third year, India has avoided criticizing Russia’s invasion of Ukraine in public. However, India has advocated for talks and diplomacy to end the conflict.

Kuleba, who met his Indian counterpart, S Jaishankar, on Friday, also urged India to support the peace summit to be hosted by Switzerland this summer based on the Ukrainian president’s peace formula because of New Delhi’s influential position among countries representing the so-called “global south”. The Ukrainian president, Volodymyr Zelenskyy, has reportedly drawn up a 10-point peace plan to end his country’s conflict with Russia.

However, so far, Moscow has shown little or no interest in it.

Before the two top diplomats met, welcoming Kuleba, Jaishankar said, “Your visit gives us an opportunity, obviously, to understand the situation in your own region, and I look forward to hearing your perspectives on that.”

Later, in a post on X, Jaishankar said he had an “open and wide-ranging” discussion with Kuleba that focused on the “ongoing conflict and its wider ramifications”, without elaborating the details.

Talking to NDTV, Kuleba said, “India can play a very important role in bringing together more nations from the global south.” Pointing to the decades-old close ties between India and Russia that dates to the early days of the Cold War, he said New Delhi can leverage its friendship with Russia to end the Russia-Ukraine conflict.

He said India can “influence the way Russia behaves” while stressing that India has a brighter future with Ukraine than it has with Russia.


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