Ukrainian President Zelenskyy writes to PM Modi, seeks additional humanitarian aid

12 April, 2023 | Pragati Singh

Ukrainian National

Economic, defence, humanitarian assistance, and global issues of mutual interest were all on the bilateral agenda.

Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelenskyy has written to Prime Minister Narendra Modi requesting additional humanitarian aid from India, including medical equipment, the foreign ministry said on Wednesday. According to a foreign ministry statement, the request came during the recent three-day visit to India by Ukrainian Deputy Foreign Minister Emine Dzhaparova, who handed over Zelenskyy’s letter to Union Minister of State for External Affairs Meenakshi Lekhi.

“Dzhaparova also called on Minister of State for External Affairs and Culture, Meenakshi Lekhi. Besides holding discussions on a wide range of bilateral and international issues of mutual interest, she handed over a letter from President Zelenskyy, addressed to Prime Minister Modi. Ukrainian request for additional humanitarian supply, including medicines and medical equipment was also shared by her,” according to the statement released by the Ministry of External Affairs.

According to the statement, the next Inter-Governmental Commission meeting between New Delhi and Kiev will be held in India on a mutually convenient date. Dzhaparova and Lekhi both exchanged views on bilateral and global issues of mutual interest.

India has promised to increase humanitarian assistance to Ukraine. Following their meeting, MoS Lekhi took to Twitter to reiterate what Prime Minister Narendra Modi said in September last year during a bilateral meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin: “Today’s era is not of war.”

She tweeted, “Not a time for War – PM @narendramodi. Pleased to meet Ukrainian First Dy FM @EmineDzheppar. Exchanged views on bilateral and global issues of mutual interest. Cultural ties and women empowerment also figured in the discussion. Ukraine was assured of enhanced humanitarian assistance.”

Meanwhile, Dzhaparova took to Twitter on Tuesday to express her gratitude. “I had a productive meeting with @M Lekhi. Minister was briefed on Ukraine’s efforts to combat unprovoked aggression. Deepening bilateral cooperation in various fields and cultures was discussed. Bookshelves and audio guides will be available in India soon under the patronage of @ZelenskaUA “She used Twitter.

During her visit, Dzhaparova met with Sanjay Verma, Secretary (West), MEA. Economic, defence, humanitarian assistance, and global issues of mutual interest were all on the bilateral agenda.

The deputy foreign minister of Ukraine briefed Secretary (West) on the current situation in Ukraine. According to a statement released by the MEA, the two sides agreed to hold the next round of Foreign Office Consultations in Kyiv on a mutually convenient date.

“The Ukrainian Deputy FM also proposed that rebuilding infrastructure in Ukraine could be an opportunity for Indian companies. Secretary (West) shared that India has provided medicines, medical equipment and would provide school buses etc. to Ukraine,” the MEA statement added.

Dzhaparova paid a visit to the Manohar Parrikar Institute of Defence Studies and spoke at the Indian Council of World Affairs. During her visit, she emphasised Ukraine’s desire to strengthen and deepen its relationship with India.