PM Modi, Macron Vow To ‘Act Jointly’ In Indo-Pacific
As a result of France's rift with the US and Australia, Prime Minister Modi and President Macron have pledged to "act collaboratively" in the Indo-Pacific.
Macron reaffirmed his commitment to "strengthening India's strategic autonomy, particularly its industry and technology base, as part of a close relationship built on trust and mutual respect" with Prime Minister Modi.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi and French President Emmanuel Macron pledged to “act jointly” in the Indo-Pacific area on Tuesday, according to the French presidency, despite tensions with Australia and the United States over the AUKUS treaty. During a telephonic conversation, Macron assured PM Modi of continued “commitment to the strengthening of India's strategic autonomy, including its industry and technology base, as part of a close relationship based on trust and mutual respect."
According to Macron's office, the two countries' joint strategy within the Euro-Indian partnership "aims to foster regional stability and the rule of law while excluding any form of hegemony." It claimed that bilateral cooperation would be reinforced in all sectors, notably in the economic realm. France also praised India's decision to resume vaccination deliveries to COVAX beginning next month.
The phone call came only days after the United States, the United Kingdom, and Australia signed a defence agreement in which the United States and the United Kingdom will assist Australia with the technology to build nuclear-powered submarines.
The new security pact, which is seen as a response to China's growing assertiveness in the region, was a big blow for France, as it resulted in the cancellation of a $40 billion French submarine contract from Australia. The deal was dubbed a "stab in the back" by the French, who summoned their embassies from the United States and Australia.
PM Modi and President Macron both expressed grave worry about Afghanistan's protracted political and humanitarian catastrophe. Both leaders expressed alarm about terrorism, narcotics, illicit weapons, and human trafficking spreading in Taliban-controlled Afghanistan.
They stressed the need to allow humanitarian organisations to operate in Afghanistan and respect the fundamental rights of Afghans. They also agreed to coordinate ahead of multilateral summits such as G20 and COP26, the French presidency said.