Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said Moscow attaches great importance to its relations with Delhi and will continue to develop ties.
In response to a question from WION during his press conference, Lavrov said: “We value our relationship very much. It is no coincidence that this is a privileged strategic partnership, and we We will continue to develop and advance this partnership.”
Russian President Putin visited India last month for the annual India-Russia summit. That month also saw the first-ever meeting of defense and foreign ministers of India and Russia, which will alternate between the two countries.
The Russian Foreign Minister said President Putin had ‘very useful negotiations’ in Delhi and that ‘the President and Prime Minister (Modi) managed to spend several hours talking and it was a very useful exchange “.
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The main pillars of the partnership between the two countries are defense and space. The BrahMos missile system, as well as India’s licensed production of SU-30 aircraft and T-90 tanks, are examples of this landmark cooperation in the defense sector.
In the field of space cooperation, Russia has trained four Indian cosmonauts who will be part of the Gaganyaan mission, India’s first manned space mission.
In response to the RIC summit, or Russia, India and China summit, FM Lavrov described the RIC grouping as “an important structure”, stressing that the foreign ministers have met “about twenty times since the creation of the RIC”. He stressed that there are “sectoral meetings between ministers, their deputies and experts in trade, economic and humanitarian cooperation”.
Last year, the foreign ministers of the RIC countries met virtually. The leaders of the RIC countries met on the sidelines of the G20 summit. The latest leaders-level meeting of Prime Minister Modi, President Xi and Putin took place on the sidelines of the G20 summit in Osaka. But aggressive Chinese action on the Line of Actual Control with India could make it difficult to hold such meetings.
The Russian Foreign Minister said: “We see that our Indian and Chinese friends are interested in maintaining this format and developing this format in the future”, stressing that “I know that India and China have a dialogue direct on many issues, including security issues.” I know there is a strategic partnership statement between India and China, but if “the RIC can be helpful in building trust, that is something something that we are going to support”.
Russian presidential aide Yury Ushakov is hopeful for the summit and was the first to speak about the meeting taking place this year. For Russia, India and China are close allies.
As Lavrov said, “besides the political importance of this RIC format, the 3 countries are part of the same geographical space, the RIC format also deals with economic formats of cooperation which are promising”. Russia, China, India are part of the SCO, BRICS groupings.