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Jaishankar on three day visit to France; Ukraine discussion on the table

Jaishankar on three day visit to France; Ukraine discussion on the table

Paris: Indian External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar met his French counterpart Jean Yves Le Drian in a meeting that saw discussions on bipartisan ties as well as the still-undefused tension around the Ukraine-Russia border issue.

"Held wide-ranging and productive talks with FM Jean Yves Le Drian. Discussions on bilateral cooperation, Ukraine situation,Indo-Pacific and JCPOA reflected our deep trust & global partnership. Look forward to participating in EU Ministerial Forum on Indo- Pacific," Jaishankar tweeted.

His three-day visit to France comes shortly after the Munich Security Conference where he defended the Quad summit held in Australia as being more than just the "Asian version of NATO".

"It isn't because there are three countries who are treaty allies. We are not a treaty ally. It doesn't have a treaty, a structure, a secretariat, it's a kind of 21st century way of responding to a more diversified, dispersed world," Jaishankar argued. The countries involved at the USA, Japan, Australia and India.

Jaishankar's talks with US Secretary of State Biden also reaffirmed India's stance to use diplomacy and international regulations to handle the Ukraine's crisis.

"On the issue of Ukraine and Russia, I can say that there was an open and honest conversation...It is a complex issue for India as well. We share values. And we talk about every issue, including the tough ones," said Donald Lu, US assistant secretary of state for South and Central Asia last week.

In their talks, Jaishankar and Le Drian appreciated the close cooperation between India and France during the COVID-19 pandemic and agreed to further deepen the strategic partnership, particularly in the areas of trade and investments, defence and security, health, education, research and innovation, energy and climate change, the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) said in a statement.

As part of this endeavour, both sides adopted the India-France Roadmap on the Blue Economy and Ocean Governance', which aims to enhance partnership in the field of blue economy by way of institutional, economic, infrastructural and scientific cooperation, it said.

With the goal of further facilitating people-to-people contact, the two ministers also agreed to continue and enhance their cooperation in the field of sports and agreed to soon conclude a Joint Declaration of Intent in the Area of Sports, the MEA said.

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TAGS:Ukraine border crisis India S Jaishankar MEA France 
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