Both India and France accord high priority to their strategic partnership

India and France on Thursday held their annual Strategic Dialogue in New Delhi and discussed on a variety of issues, including counter-terrorism, cyber-security, defence cooperation, maritime security, regional and global issues and cooperation in the Indo-Pacific region.

At the annual Strategic Dialogue, while National Security Advisor Ajit Doval led the Indian delegation, the French delegation was headed by Emmanuel Bonne, Diplomatic Advisor to the French President.

During the meeting, as per a statement issued by the External Affairs Ministry, both sides reaffirmed the high priority they accord to the India-France strategic partnership and highlighted the convergence of views between the two countries.

Following the Dialogue, Diplomatic Advisor to the French President, Bonne also called on Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh and External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar, and met Foreign Secretary Harsh Vardhan Shringla.

He also addressed the Vivekananda International Foundation on “France and India: Partners for a stable and prosperous Indo-Pacific.” Earlier in an interview with a New Delhi-based news agency, Emmanuel Bonne had called for combined initiatives between India and France during India’s tenure at the UNSC.

He had also thanked India for its support to France when it was “under attack by some leaders in Turkey and Pakistan and in other countries”, a veiled reference to the backlash France received from many nations, including Pakistan and Turkey, after the killing of French teacher Samuel Paty.

In December 2020, Prime Minister Narendra Modi called up French President Emmanuel Macron and expressed his support for France’s fight against terrorism.