British Prime Minister Boris Johnson will travel to India next weekend, where he will meet his partner Narendra Modi and hold trade and strategic talks, the British government reported on Saturday (16.04.2022).
“At a time when our peace and prosperity are threatened by autocratic states, it is imperative that democracy and friends stand together,” Boris Johnson said in a statement.
“India, a major economic power and the world’s largest democracy, is a very important strategic partner for the UK in these uncertain times,” he added.
Johnson’s visit will focus on “what really matters” to the populations of both countries, “from job creation and economic growth, to energy security and defense.”
Britain and India have very different positions on the situation in Ukraine. While London is increasing economic sanctions against Russia and supporting kyiv through arms shipments, Modi’s government has not publicly condemned Russia’s invasion of the United Nations.
For India, Russia is a “good friend” and a “main pillar” of its foreign policy as a strategic partner for its national security.
On April 22 in the capital New Delhi, Johnson and Modi will hold “in-depth discussions” on “strategic defense” and “diplomatic and economic partnerships”, according to Downing Street.
The talks seek to “strengthen our close partnership and intensify security cooperation in the Indo-Pacific region,” he added.
After Brexit, the region is now at the forefront of British diplomacy. Johnson will also try to advance negotiations to start a free trade agreement with India.
gs (afp, reuters, efe)
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