West ‘jealously’ watching Modi’s Moscow trip – Kremlin

The Indian leader’s visit to Russia is of great significance, according to Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov

West ‘jealously’ watching Modi’s Moscow trip – Kremlin

The bilateral summit between the Russian and Indian leaders is of great significance, spokesman Dmitry Peskov has stressed

The West is “jealously” monitoring Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to Russia, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov has said. The two-day trip, which begins on Monday, is the Indian leader’s first foreign bilateral visit since he was reelected for a third consecutive term last month.  

“They [the West] are jealous, which means they are watching closely. Watching closely means they attach great importance [to the visit]. And here, they are not mistaken; there is indeed great significance,” Peskov said in an interview with Russian media on Sunday.  

Modi will attend a private dinner hosted by Russian President Vladimir Putin on Monday. The following day, he will meet with the Indian diaspora in Moscow. The two leaders then will have closed-door talks, followed by delegation-level negotiations. According to the Kremlin, the discussions on bilateral relations will cover defense cooperation, investment, education and culture, and people-to-people ties.  

New Delhi attaches “great importance” to the trip, Indian Foreign Secretary Vinay Mohan Kwatra told the media on Friday. The last bilateral meeting between Modi and Putin was in 2021, when the Russian leader visited New Delhi. 

In a statement ahead of his departure to Moscow, Modi noted that ties between the two countries have advanced over the past decade, including in the areas of energy, security, trade, investment, health, education, culture, tourism, and people-to-people exchanges.  

“I look forward to reviewing all aspects of bilateral cooperation with my friend President Vladimir Putin and sharing perspectives on various regional and global issues,” he said. “We seek to play a supportive role for a peaceful and stable region. The visit will also provide me an opportunity to meet the vibrant Indian community in Russia.” 

New Delhi has upheld strong ties with Moscow despite persistent Western scrutiny over the Ukraine conflict. Bilateral trade reached $65 billion last year, primarily driven by India’s increased purchases of discounted Russian coal and oil. Earlier this month, New Delhi declined to sign the final document at the Swiss peace summit on the Ukraine conflict due to Russia’s exclusion from the event. The Indian leadership emphasized that any resolution should be achieved through dialogue and diplomacy and agreed upon by both parties. Additionally, India has abstained from UN resolutions condemning Russia over Ukraine.