Athens, India and Greece conveyed their deep commitment to multilateralism and a rules-based international order while reaffirming the importance of the urgent reform of the United Nations (UN) including United Nations Security Council (UNSC) expansion, and other multilateral institutions so as to make them more inclusive, transparent, accountable, and better reflective of contemporary geopolitical realities.
The Greek side reiterated its support for permanent membership of India in a reformed UNSC. This agenda of discussion came in during External Affairs Minister Dr. S Jaishankar’s visit to Greece from June 25-27. Dr. Jaishankar paid the official of the country at the invitation of the Minister of Foreign affairs of the Hellenic Republic Nikos Dendias. On the occasion of the 200th anniversary of Greek independence, the External Affairs Minister conveyed felicitations of the Indian President and the Prime Minister to the Government and the people of Greece.
During the visit, the External Affairs Minister paid a courtesy call on Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis, and had bilateral talks with his counterpart Nikos Dendias. He also unveiled the statue of Mahatma Gandhi in Athens on June 26. The statue will act as a strong symbol of friendship between the two countries.
India and Greece enjoy close and friendly relations which have been strengthened by the shared values of democracy, rule of law, pluralism, equality, freedom of speech and respect for human rights.
Both sides had a comprehensive exchange of views on further consolidating the bilateral relations, which continue to deepen and expand rapidly. The two leaders noted with satisfaction the ongoing cooperation in several areas, such as, trade and investment, science and technology, culture, academics and people-to-people contact and agreed to work together to further enhance collaboration in these areas.
It was also agreed that the next round of Foreign Office Consultations and Joint Trade Committee would be held soon. Both sides also agreed to work towards the establishment of a Strategic Partnership.
On this occasion, the Greek Foreign Minister signed and handed over the Agreement on the International Solar Alliance (ISA) to the Indian side. The External Affairs Minister welcomed Greece to the family of the ISA. Both sides agreed that this will assist the two countries in realisation of the energy goals set by the respective governments to make renewable energy a significant part of the energy supply.
In the globalised world, both sides noted the importance of movement of people in an orderly and legal way and agreed to work towards and signing an agreement on migration and mobility.
Considering their rich ancient past, the two sides agreed to continue their relationship in the field of culture. They reiterated the importance of signing the Cultural Exchange Programme for the period 2021-2025 at an early date.
The two sides also shared views on regional and global issues of mutual interest in the context of new geo-political and geo-economic realities, including the Indo-Pacific. The two countries noted with satisfaction the convergence of each-others’ vision for a free, open, inclusive and cooperative Indo-Pacific ensuring connectivity and growth for all in the region.
Both sides discussed the recent developments pertaining to the Eastern Mediterranean, Cyprus and Libya, and agreed that the rule of law and respect for sovereignty and territorial integrity are fundamental principles of international relations that must be observed by all.
Both the countries recognised the threat posed by radicalisation, violent extremism, as well as terrorism, including cross border terrorism. They emphasised that there can be no justification for these in any form or manifestation.
Both sides discussed the Covid-19 situation globally and the process of economic recovery. They agreed on the need for joint efforts to combat the disease and to work together for consolidating economic and commercial activities during and immediately after the pandemic.
The Indian side expressed gratitude for the warm hospitality extended to them by the Greek side, and extended an invitation to Foreign Minister of Greece to visit India at a mutually convenient date.