Ukraine’s Zelensky and India’s Modi meet in Japan for first face-to-face since Russia invasion



Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky met with Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi on the sidelines of the Group of Seven (G7) summit in Japan Saturday, the primary in-person assembly between the 2 since Russia’s invasion started.

Modi – who has up to now refused to sentence the invasion – stated India would do “the whole lot we are able to” to assist finish the battle.

“The battle in Ukraine is a giant problem for the entire world,” he stated. “It has additionally had many results on the entire world. However I don’t take into account it to be simply a difficulty of financial system or politics. For me, it is a matter of humanity.”

For his half, Zelensky invited Modi to affix Ukraine’s peace efforts to carry the battle towards Russia to an finish.

Zelensky’s in particular person attendance on the G7 – unconfirmed by host nation Japan till simply Saturday morning – offers the wartime chief the chance to satisfy with the member nations who already squarely again Ukraine – Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the UK and the USA – and press them for continued army support.

But it surely additionally provides Zelenksy an opportunity to hunt help for Ukraine and its imaginative and prescient for peace with leaders from a handful of different nations additionally attending the summit – a few of which haven’t joined the West in leveraging sanctions towards Russia or these, like India, which have refused to sentence Russia on the United Nations.

India is traditionally a significant purchaser of Russian weaponry and has long-standing ties to Moscow. It has additionally ramped up purchases of Russian vitality – offering a key financial lifeline to chief Vladimir Putin’s authorities, even because the West slaps in depth controls on this key income supply.

Although New Delhi has despatched humanitarian support to Ukraine all through the course of the battle, it has abstained from UN resolutions calling for its withdrawal and condemning its invasion.

Profitable help or understanding from leaders like Modi might be a key motivation additionally driving Zelensky to attend the G7, analysts have stated. Different taking part nations embody Indonesia, Australia, Brazil, Korea, and Vietnam.

In Modi’s case, shut ties to Russia might imply the potential to each leverage strain on Putin, or hold his financial system going.

Final yr, Modi spoke to Putin of the necessity to “transfer onto a path of peace” throughout a face-to-face with the Russian chief on the sidelines of the Shanghai Cooperation Group summit in Uzbekistan in September, in keeping with a readout from the Indian aspect – considered on the time as an indication of impatience from New Delhi because the battle dragged on.

However months later the Indian chief has appeared dedicated to strolling a cautious line, neither explicitly condemning the Kremlin or calling for its withdrawal from Russian territory.

Modi has spoken with Zelensky over the cellphone a number of instances since Russia’s invasion, most lately in December, the place the Indian chief reiterated his name for the “cessation of hostilities” and “dialogue” to resolve the battle.

Zelensky’s peace plan, in distinction, requires the restoration of Ukraine’s internationally acknowledged borders and the withdrawal of Russian troops.

Western leaders have criticized requires a ceasefire that don’t additionally embody a withdrawal of Russia troops, saying they’re tantamount to serving to Moscow solidify the territory it has annexed.

Zelensky additionally attended the Arab League summit in Saudi Arabia on Friday, the place he urged sympathy from leaders in Saudi Arabia who “flip a blind eye” to the battle in Ukraine.

On the G7, Zelensky is scheduled to take a seat down with leaders from G7 member nations, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the UK and the USA, in addition to take part in a bigger session on peace and stability together with different invited nations, Japan stated Saturday.

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