The Modi-Putin conversation on Friday — held on the sidelines of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) Summit in Samarkand, Uzbekistan — was widely carried by the mainstream American media.
“Modi rebukes Putin over war in Ukraine,” The Washington Post reported in a headline. “In a stunning public rebuke, Modi told Putin: “Today’s era is not an era of war, and I have spoken to you on the phone about this,” the daily reported.
“The rare reproach showed the 69-year-old Russian strongman coming under extraordinary pressure from all sides,” the Post said.
It was the lead story on the webpage of both The Washington Post and The New York Times.
SCO Summit 2022: Leaders converge in Uzbek city of Samarkand
<p>PM Narendra Modi departs for India from Samarkand, Uzbekistan after attending the SCO summit (ANI)</p>
“India’s Leader Tells Putin That Now Is Not an Era for War,” The New York Times said in its headline. “The tone of the meeting was friendly, with both leaders referring to their long shared history. Before Modi made his comments, Putin said he understood India’s concerns about the war in Ukraine,” the daily said.
“Modi’s comments came a day after President Xi Jinping of China — in his first face-to-face meeting with Mr. Putin since the invasion began — struck a far more subdued tone than the Russian president, and steered clear in his public comments of any mention of Ukraine,” reported The New York Times.
Locked in a confrontation with the West over the war, Putin has repeatedly said Russia is not isolated because it can look eastwards to major Asian powers such as China and India. But at the SCO summit, concerns spilled out into the open.
As Modi made his remarks, Putin pursed his lips, glanced at Modi and then looked down before touching the hair on the back of his head. Putin told Modi that he understood the Indian leader had concerns about Ukraine, but that Moscow was doing everything it could to end the conflict.
“I know your position on the conflict in Ukraine, the concerns that you constantly express,” Putin said. “We will do everything to stop this as soon as possible.”
(With inputs from agencies)