Russia and India have plans to work together across a range of military matters, including joint exercises, President Vladimir Putin revealed on Monday.
His comments came during a meeting with Narendra Modi, the Indian prime minister, in New Delhi to discuss the long-term partnership of their nations in a number of spheres, including energy, space travel, Covid-19 vaccine production, and medicine. Putin opened the discussions by explaining that the countries were planning to "develop relations in the international arena, as well as directly in the military sphere."
"We are conducting joint military exercises, in both Indian territory and Russian territory," he said. "We thank you for your attention to this component of our work. And we plan to work more in this direction."
The Russian leader also went on to say that his nation was collaborating on military technology with India more closely than with any other partner. "Together, we're working on developing high-grade military products and manufacturing, including in India," he said.
Earlier that day, leaders from both countries had concluded an agreement to collaborate on military technology from 2021 to 2030.
On the subject of Russia's relationship with India, Putin commented, "We treat India as a great power, with a people who are friendly to us, and with a remarkable history of relations between us."
Sergey Lavrov, Russia's foreign minister, also announced on Monday that Russia would like to involve India in discussions about Afghanistan along with China, Pakistan, and the US. "As far as we are concerned, there is every reason to engage countries such as India and Iran in the group's activities," the Russian top diplomat said.