Italian PM Giorgia Meloni asks Modi to press for peace in Ukraine

Italian Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni sought Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s help on Thursday to facilitate a “just peace” in Ukraine, as foreign ministers from some of the world’s biggest economies met in New Delhi.

Meloni’s two-day visit to India, the first by an Italian prime minister in five years, coincides with a meeting of G20 foreign ministers in the Indian capital to discuss Russia’s year-long war in Ukraine.

India has refused to blame Russia for the war, called for a diplomatic solution and has sharply increased its purchases of subsidized Russian oil.

look | Italian Prime Minister Meloni said, ‘PM Modi is the most favorite among world leaders’

“We both share the hope that India, as G20 Chair, can play a central role in facilitating negotiations towards a ceasefire and a just peace,” Meloni told reporters at a joint briefing with Modi. ,

Earlier in the day, Modi called upon the G-20 ministers to find common ground on global issues and said India stood ready to contribute to efforts to restore peace.

He said, “From the very beginning of the Ukraine conflict, India has made it clear that this dispute can only be resolved through dialogue and diplomacy, and India is fully prepared to contribute to any peaceful response.” “

Modi also said he discussed expanding cooperation in semiconductors, renewable energy and green hydrogen with Meloni.

India and Italy are celebrating 75 years of diplomatic ties this year and are trying to mend ties damaged by the shooting of two fishermen by Italian marines off the southern Indian coast in 2012. Relations were going cold for a long time.

India’s Supreme Court said in June 2021 that it had dropped all proceedings over the shooting against two Italian marines after Rome paid $1.36 million in compensation.

Salvatore Girone and Massimiliano Latorre, who were arrested for the shooting in February 2012, said the killings were accidental as they mistook the fishermen for pirates and fired warning shots while on duty at the Italian oil tanker “Enrica Lexie”. were fired.

An Indian court had earlier barred the Italian ambassador from leaving the country over the shooting, leading to a diplomatic row between the countries.

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