Ukraine Seeks India’s Peace Role – OpEd


Ukrainian President  Zelensky and Prime Minister met in Hiroshima on the sidelines of the G7 Summit  where both leaders had been invited as guests.President Zelensky presented PM Modi with a peace plan to end the war with Russia and sought India’s endorsement. He also invited Modi to visit Ukraine.

Prime Minister Modi conveyed that he understood the suffering of the Ukrainian people and that India would do whatever it can to bring an end to the Ukraine conflict and help the Ukrainian people. Modi had also assured India’s clear support for dialogue and diplomacy to find a way forward and for him this was “not a political or economic issue but an issue of humanity, of human values.” Ukraine’s Presidential Office Head Andriy Yermakon had spoken to India’s NSA Ajit Doval on June 14 June 14  to seek India’s participation in a Global Peace Summit being organised by Ukraine for implementation of the Ukrainian Peace Formula.

Earlier in February, China issued “China’s Position on the Political Settlement of the Ukraine Crisis,” pointing out that dialogue and negotiation are the only viable solutions to the Ukraine crisis and the international community should create conditions and platforms for the resumption of negotiation. But there was no consensus or way forward on resolving the conflict through negotiations.

The  near 19 month old Ukraine war has lowered the economies of a large number of countries to the lowest levels. The war has given a massive shock to the global economy, especially to energy and food markets, reducing supplies and pushing up prices of essential commodities to unprecedented levels. 

Why Ukraine Is Keen On Indian Lead Role 

Ukraine since the beginning has been looking at India to help end the war. The Ukrainian leadership wants to coordinate with India on security issues and hopes for greater Indian involvement in efforts to end the war. Ukraine is keen to enhance engagement with India, especially at the level of the Prime Minister and NSA.

Pointing to the Indian G20 presidency’s motto of “One Earth, One Family, One Future”, Dzhaparova said this is “absolutely the correct thing because everything is inter-connected and this is why we believe India should play a greater role”. “We call India ‘Vishwaguru’. That’s something that also puts us on a common path because we promote values…My visit here is with one clear goal – to make our dialogue more intensified.”

The Indian side has consistently called for an end to hostilities and a return to dialogue, with Modi telling Putin last year that “today’s era is not of war”. Ukraine envisages a “bigger engagement and greater involvement” for India in efforts to end the war, though all negotiations should be based on Zelensky’s 10-point peace plan, she said. 

India’s Chance For Initiating Russia-Ukraine Peace

India must play a bigger,more active role in ending the Russia-Ukraine conflict and must take this invite seriously. Some countries are of the opinion that Prime Minister  Modi can mediate in bringing about peace as he is close to President  Putin ,US President Joe Biden and President Zelensky seeks India’s endorsement and support to end the war with Russia.

Indian Prime minister Modi who has talked of “The Era of No War.” India the earlier world leader of the non-aligned world can lead the way forward towards considered negotiated solutions to the ongoing problems at large and resolve the Russia-Ukraine conflict earliest. No one else can play this role better of course teaming up along with the UN and all stake holders. 

India playing the Presidency role for the G20 will help nations come together to help restore the ‘Global Peace and United Nations Credibility’.The theme of India’s G20 Presidency-“Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam” a Sanskrit phrase meaning “The World is One Family” Or “One Earth-One Family-One Future” –  Essentially, the theme affirms the value of all life and their interconnection on the planet Earth. The logo and the theme together convey a powerful message of India’s G20 Presidency, which is of striving for just and equitable growth for all in the world, as the world navigates through these turbulent times.‘Unity in Diversity’ is one of the most powerful thoughts India has given to the world. 

UN Need To Push For A Cease-Fire

A ceasefire in the Ukraine war is a complex issue that involves multiple parties,stake holders and geopolitical considerations. The UN or the Secretary-General has played no major diplomatic role in the Russia and Ukraine war to date. UN Chief Guterres while in Ukraine said that Let me be very clear that the UN Security Council had failed to prevent or end the war in Ukraine. This was “a source of great disappointment, frustration and anger.”

Confidence-building measures are a must to create an environment conducive to dialogue and trust-building between the parties involved. This can include exchanges of prisoners, withdrawal of heavy weaponry and the implementation of localised ceasefires in specific areas.

No cease-fire can take place until the US, NATO and the UN has an in-house discussion to resolve the issue. UN has first to ensure that arms supply to Ukraine is stopped as a first step to get Russia on board for a cease-fire. UN Chief  need to work out a negotiated ceasefire plan,  near acceptable to both the warring nations.UN Chief has to personally take a lead in trying to mediate a peace in Ukraine or risk future of the UN. Resolving a conflict of this magnitude requires the commitment and cooperation of all parties involved. Achieving a lasting ceasefire and sustainable peace will require long-term dedication, perseverance and international pressure. UN Chief and his team have to come out with an ‘Out of Box Idea’ to resolve the Ukraine Conflict. This war will have no victors among the two warring nations. Both will be losers!

India has traditionally pursued a policy of non-alignment and neutrality in international conflicts. India has expressed concern over the ongoing conflict and called for a peaceful resolution to the crisis. India has consistently supported Ukraine’s territorial integrity.  India must strongly participate in the “Global Peace Summit being organised by Ukraine” for implementation of the Ukrainian Peace Formula along with like minded countries and their leaders.

Patial RC

Patial RC is a retired Infantry officer of the Indian Army and possesses unique experience of serving in active CI Ops across the country and in Sri Lanka. Patial RC is a regular writer on military and travel matters in military professional journals. The veteran is a keen mountaineer and a trekker.

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