Putin to Modi: 'We'll do our best to end Ukraine conflict as soon as possible'

In their first face-to-face meeting since the Ukraine conflict began, Modi tells Putin: 'Excellency, I know today's time is not a time for war'



Reuters photo
Reuters photo

By AFP

Published: Fri 16 Sep 2022, 6:03 PM

Last updated: Fri 16 Sep 2022, 6:04 PM

Russian President Vladimir Putin told Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Friday that he wanted to end the conflict in Ukraine as soon as possible and understood that India had concerns about the fighting.

"I know your position on the conflict in Ukraine, your concerns.... We will do our best to end this as soon as possible," Putin told Modi on the sidelines of a regional summit in Uzbekistan.

Modi told Putin that now was "not a time for war", television images showed.

New Delhi and Moscow have longstanding ties dating back to the Cold War, and Russia remains by far India's biggest arms supplier.

But in their first face-to-face meeting since Moscow's forces invaded Ukraine in February, Modi told Putin: "Excellency, I know today's time is not a time for war."

India has shied away from explicitly condemning Russia for the invasion, which sent the price of oil and other commodities soaring.

But he stressed the importance of "democracy and diplomacy and dialogue" in the meeting on the sidelines of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation summit in the Uzbek city of Samarkand, footage showed on Indian public service broadcaster Doordashan.

They would discuss "how to move forward on the path of peace", Modi added.

The comments from the Indian leader came just a day after Putin acknowledged that China -- Russia's key ally -- had "concerns" over the conflict in Ukraine.

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