Expressing serious concern about the ongoing humanitarian crisis in Ukraine, India and Germany have reiterated the need for an immediate cessation of hostilities.

Discussing the issue at the 6th India-Germany Inter-Governmental Consultations (ICG) in Berlin on Monday, Prime Minister Narendra Modi and German Chancellor Olaf Scholz unequivocally condemned civilian deaths in Ukraine.

"They emphasised that the contemporary global order has been built on the UN Charter, international law and respect for sovereignty and the territorial integrity of states. They discussed the destabilizing effect of the conflict in Ukraine and its broader regional and global implications. Both sides agreed to remain closely engaged on the issue," said the Joint Statement issued after the talks.

According to the statement, Germany reiterated its strong condemnation of the unlawful and unprovoked aggression against Ukraine by Russian Forces.

Briefing the media later, Foreign Secretary Vinay Mohan Kwatra said the two leaders "shared their respective perspectives on developments on different issues developing all over the world. This included the knock on effects of the Ukraine conflict, particularly in sectors like food, energy, fertilizers, edible oil, these are all subject matter of discussion under the views on the global developments".

Responding to a question about India's stand on Ukraine, Foreign Secretary Kwatra said that from the onset of the conflict, India has consistently talked about "immediate and early cessation of hostilities and the resolution part, which goes through diplomacy and dialogue".

"I think these have been the central pillars in terms of our position, which we have explained many times. You know, the question of principles, question of values, question of interest I think eventually it's a question of balancing principles and interests, and I think our position and it takes care of our principles, is also our interest," the Foreign Secretary pointed out.

According to the Joint Statement issued after the IGC, both sides also discussed Afghanistan and expressed their serious concern about the humanitarian situation, the resurgence of violence, including targeted terrorist attacks, the systemic violations of human rights and fundamental freedoms, and the hampered access of girls and women to education.

"They reiterated strong support for a peaceful, secure and stable Afghanistan and confirmed to continue to provide humanitarian assistance to the people of Afghanistan," the Joint Statement said.

Prime Minister Modi and Chancellor Scholz strongly condemned terrorism in all its forms and manifestations, including any use of terrorist proxies and cross-border terrorism. They called upon all countries to work towards rooting out terrorist safe havens and infrastructure, disrupting terrorist networks and financing in accordance with international law, including international humanitarian law.

They further called for concerted action against all terrorist groups, including groups proscribed by the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) 1267 Sanctions Committee, the Joint Statement said.

Both sides stressed the significance of a free, open and inclusive Indo-Pacific, recognizing the centrality of ASEAN.

At the IGC, Germany and India reaffirmed their Governments’ determination to strengthen and reform multilateralism to tackle current and future challenges, to defend peace and stability globally, to bolster international law, and to defend the fundamental principles of peaceful settlement of conflicts and the sovereignty and territorial integrity of states.