• Thursday, December 08, 2022

INDIA

Ukraine seeks India’s mediation to end Russian aggression

Ukraine’s foreign minister Dmytro Kuleba. (Photo by AFP via Getty Images)

By: Chandrashekar Bhat

UKRAINE has sought India’s intervention to stop Russian aggression on the eastern European country as peace talks between Moscow and Kyiv have not made any meaningful headway.

Ukraine’s foreign minister Dmytro Kuleba said India should leverage its friendly ties with Russia and prevail upon its president Vladimir Putin to stop the ongoing destruction.

India has refused to side with Russia or Ukraine over the conflict and did not join Western countries in explicitly condemning or imposing economic sanctions on Moscow.

If Indian prime minister Narendra Modi is willing to play the role of a mediator, “we would welcome his efforts”, Kuleba told NDTV on Wednesday (30).

His “request” came a day before Russian foreign minister Sergei Lavrov and British foreign secretary Liz Truss’ visit to New Delhi.

“There is only one person on this planet who wants this war to continue and that is president Putin. If prime minister Modi can convince him to stop the war and restore global peace and stability, why should we be against that?” Kuleba said.

“We request the government of India to take advantage of its relationship with Russia, and convince president Putin to stop this war”.

He reminded India that one of its students was also killed in the conflict which has been devastating Ukraine since February 24 when Putin announced the “special military operations”.

“As long as the war goes on and people get killed, it means that we have to do more. More on all fronts including the sanctions front. We already see the impact of sanctions on the Russian economy and Russian elite,” Kuleba told the news channel.

According to him, Kyiv and New Delhi have good “mutually beneficial” relationships – while India supplied pharmaceutical products, Ukraine exported agricultural products to the south Asian country.

“Ukraine is a reliable consumer of Indian products … and is a guarantor of India’s food security,” he claimed.

The impact of the war has already been felt in India not just in terms of soaring energy costs, but the prices of sunflower oil – traditionally imported from Ukraine – have gone through the roof, forcing the government to diversify its sources.

Obliquely referring to US president Joe Biden’s controversial references to Putin, Kuleba said a moderation of language is “definitely necessary”.

“Sometimes, it is not words that help you win, it is deeds- very specific action that needs to be taken”.

Eastern Eye

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