Nicosia — India and Cyprus on Thursday signed three agreements, including an MOU on defense and military cooperation, and had fruitful conversations about the whole range of bilateral relations as well as problems of shared and international significance, such as the war in Ukraine.
India’s External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar, on his first official visit to Cyprus, as the two nations mark 60 years of diplomatic ties, met his Cypriot counterpart Ioannis Kasoulides and signed a letter of intent on immigration and mobility, a defense and military cooperation pact, and a deal on Cyprus joining the International Solar Alliance (ISA).
The two leaders also discussed their goals for promoting freedom, democracy, and the rule of law around the world.
According to Kasoulides, India and Cyprus were motivated by their partnership to diversify and intensify people-to-people contact in order to forge a genuinely solid and enduring friendship.
Jaishankar and Kasoulides also used the occasion to discuss the whole range of bilateral relations as well as a number of international concerns, including the war in Ukraine and the situation in Afghanistan.
Jaishankar said, “it was a matter of pleasure to be here on my first official visit as the Minister of External Affairs and this takes place as we mark 60 years of our diplomatic relations. It is a matter of particular pride and pleasure that I could be here for the occasion”.
The minister said his meeting with the Cypriot counterpart shows India’s commitment towards deepening its bilateral cooperation. “India-Cyprus partnership is one of immense importance”, he said.
“It is rooted in our shared values of democracy, diversity, pluralism and respect for law. The strategic aspects of the relationship have gained a new meaning in recent years, reflected in our bilateral engagements”, he said.
Particularly helpful was the discussion of the myriad pressing issues the world community is currently experiencing. We are both guided by similar ideals and guiding principles as we strengthen our own relationships and collaborate with other partners, he continued.
“We have had today very productive discussions on our bilateral relations, on our multilateral cooperation, on geopolitical and regional challenges. So we exchanged views on our respective neighbourhoods, on the Indo-Pacific, on the Middle East or West Asia as we call it, on Europe, on India-EU relations,” Jaishankar told the media.
The second was the Letter of Intent on Migration and Mobility Partnership, which, according to him, will offer a standard framework for agreements and collaboration to promote the mobility of students, academics, businesspeople, and professionals as well as aid in the fight against irregular migration.
Jaishankar expressed his belief that the signature of the Framework Agreement on International Solar Alliance by Cyprus will improve bilateral cooperation in the area of renewable energy.
The Cypriot minister stated that although India and Cyprus were pleased with the strong momentum in their bilateral cooperation, they aimed to further fortify the connections in areas like trade, business, investment, maritime affairs, tourism, and education.
Jaishankar added that commemorative stamps were distributed on Thursday by the two nations to mark the 60th anniversary of diplomatic relations and the 75th anniversary of India’s independence.