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Putin invites Modi to Vladivostok
January 7, 2019, 1:58 pm

Indian Prime Minister Modi and Russian President Putin shake hands before a bilateral meet in Xiamen, China on 4 September 2017 [PPIO]


Russian President Vladimir Putin has extended an invitation to India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi to attend the Vladivostock Economic Forum in September of this year.

The Kremlin said that the two leaders who maintain a strategic partnership spoke over the phone on Monday and discussed boosting their joint trade and projects portfolio and engaing the Asia-Pacific region.

The phone call comes as a follow-up to a trilateral meeting with Chinese President Xi Jinping as well in Buenos Aires on November 30 on the sidelines of the G20 Summit there.

The three leaders at the time had agreed to boost coordination and strengthen multilateralism at a time when populism and isolationism were sweeping through Europe and North America.

During their Monday phone conversation, Modi and Putin said they were dedicated to a multilateral approach to resolving important world issues, among them fighting global terrorism.

India and Russia enjoy a “Special and Privileged Strategic Partnership” which has grown stronger over the past seven decades.

The two strategic allies have worked together in many multilateral platforms such as BRICS – along with Brazil, China and South Africa – as well as meeting on the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly every year.

Modi last visited Russia during an informal meeting in the resort port of Sochi in May 2018.

At the time, one of the central issues was the conclusion of Russian arms exports to India, including the advanced anti-missile S-400 weapons system. During Putin’s visit to New Delhi in October to mark the 19th India-Russia bilateral annual summit, the two countries finalized the delivery of the S-400 system.

Last week, Indian officials said that they expect first delivery of the S-400 system in October 2020.

With a range of 400 kilometers, S-400 Triumf is designed to shield from air strikes, strategic, cruise, tactical and operating tactical ballistic missiles and medium-range ballistic missiles.

The S-400 is believed to be able to engage all types of aerial targets including aircraft and VLO (Very Low Observable) craft. The S-400 can seek and destroy targets at a distance of 400 km and at an altitude of up to 32 km.

Military analysts say that acquiring the S-400 ‘Triumf’ air defense missile systems will “drastically” boost India’s war potential, capacity and capability.

India has defied pressure from the US to cancel the arms weapons purchases from Russia on the pretext that it could violate US congressional sanctions on Moscow.

The two countries have been trying to finalize the arms deal, particularly of the S-400 system, since 2015.

The BRICS Post with inputs from Agencies

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