Russian President Vladimir Putin, in a virtual interview with news agency Press Trust of India (PTI) on Saturday, 5 June, addressed a number of pressing issues, including Sino-India relations, and participation in the Quad. Here are some key highlights.
Putin said that Modi and Xi Jinping are both “responsible” leaders capable of solving the problems between them. No “extra-regional power” should interfere in these issues.
“Yes, I know that there are some issues related to India-China relations but there are always a lot of issues between neighbouring countries. I know the attitude of both the Prime Minister of India and also the President of China. These are very responsible people and they earnestly treat one another with utmost respect and I believe that they will always arrive at a solution to any issue that they might face. But it is important that no extra-regional power interferes.”Vladimir Putin to PTI
Putin also discussed the cooperation between India and Russia and the deep, profound relationship between the two countries. He said that this relationship was based on “trust”. He also mentioned that India and Russia are working together on manufacturing “advanced weapon systems and technologies”, but that is not where the cooperation between the countries ends. It is “multifaceted”.
“We highly appreciate such a high level of cooperation with our Indian friends. These relations are of a strategic nature. They cover a whole range of avenues of our cooperation in economy, energy and hi-tech. In defence, and I am not just talking about purchase of Russian arms...We have very deep profound relations with India based on trust,”Vladimir Putin
On Participation in Quad
On being asked about Quad and the Russian Foreign Minister, Sergey Lavrov’s criticism of it, Putin asserted that Russia is not participating in the Quad, and it was not his place to assess how any other country takes part in an initiative because “every sovereign nation has the right to decide with whom and to what extent they are building their relations. I only believe that any partnership between countries should not be aimed at making friends against anyone”.
On His Summit With Joe Biden
The Russian President did not have expectations of a breakthrough at the summit. Speaking of the steps that deteriorated the relationship between the USA and Russia, he said,
“It was not us who introduced sanctions against the US. It was the United States who did that on every occasion and even without grounds, just because our country exists,”Vladimir Putin