Indo-Soviet Joint Statement at the conclusion of U.S.S.R. Foreign Minister Mr. 1.A. Gromyko's visit to India, August 12. 1971


On the imitation of the Government of India, the Minister of Foreign Affairs of the U.S.S.R.. His Excellency Mr. A. A. Gromyko, paid an official visit to India from the 8th to 12th August, 1971.


During his stay in New Delhi, the Minister of Foreign Affairs of the U.S.S.R. called on the President of India, Shri V. V. Giri, and was received by the Prime Minister of India, Shrimati Indira Gandhi. He also met the Food & Agriculture Minister, Shri Fakhruddin Afi Ahmed, the Finance Minister, Shri Y. B. Chavan and the Defence Minister, Shri Jagjivan Ram. He had several meetings and talks with Sardar Swaran Singh, Minister of External Affairs of India.


The meetings and talks were held in an atmosphere of warm friendship and cordiality. It was noted with deep satisfaction that the friendly relations and fruitful co-operation between the Soviet Union and India in the political, economic, cultural, technical and scientific fields are developing successfully and hold great promise for further expansion. The political and legal basis for this co-operation is further strengthened by the Treaty of Peace, Friendship and Co-operation between the U.S.S.R. and India, which was signed in New Delhi by Mr. Swaran Singh, Minister of External Affairs of India and Mr. A. A. Gromyko, Minister of Foreign Affairs of the U.S.S.R.


Both sides consider that the conclusion of the Treaty is an outstanding historic event for their two countries. The Treaty is a logical outcome of the relations of sincere friendship, respect, mutual trust and the varied ties which have been established between the Soviet Union and India in the course of many years and have stood the test of time. It corresponds to the basic interests of the Indian and Soviet peoples and opens up wide prospects for raising the fruitful co-operation between the U.S.S.R. and India to a higher level. Alongside other provisions concerning bilateral Soviet-Indian relations, the Treaty provides for the two sides maintaining regular contacts with each other on major international problems and holding mutual consultations with a view to taking appropriate effective measures to safeguard the peace and security of their countries.

The Treaty between the U.S.S.R. and India is a real act of peace, expressing the community of policy and aspirations of the U.S.S.R. and India in the struggle to strengthen peace in Asia and throughout the world and for safeguarding inter­national security. All provisions of the Treaty serve these purposes. The Treaty is not directed against anyone; it is meant to be a factor in developing friendship and good-neighbourliness, in keeping with the principles of the U.N. Charter.

The Governments of India and the U.S.S.R. are confident that the conclusion of the Treaty of Peace, Friendship and Co-operation will meet with complete approval on the part of all those who are really interested in the preservation of peace in Asia and throughout the world and on the part of the Governments of all peace-loving States.

In the course of the meetings and talks, both sides noted with satisfaction that their positions on various problems discussed were identical or very close. The Minister of External Affairs of India explained the heavy burden placed on India's resources due to over 7 million refugees who had entered India. Both sides, after a detailed discussion, reiterated their firm conviction that there can be no military solution and considered it necessary that urgent steps be taken in East Pakistan for the achievement of a political solution and for the creation of conditions of safety for the return of the refugees to their homes which alone would answer the interests of the entire people of Pakistan and the cause of the preservation of peace in the area.                                                                                   


The Indian side expressed its gratitude for the understanding of the problem shown by the Soviet Union as was evident from the Appeal addressed on 2nd April, 1971, to the President of Pakistan by the Chairman of the Supreme Soviet of the U.S.S.R. Mr. N. V. Podgorny.


Both sides held the view that outside interference in the affairs of Indo-China should immediately cease. They consider that it will be futile to attempt to impose any settlement not acceptable to the peoples of the area. They welcomed the recent 7-point proposal of the Provisional Revolutionary Government of South Vietnam as a concrete step forward which could form the basis of a peaceful political settlement.


On West Asia. both sides were convinced of the urgent need for the imple­mentation of the Resolution of the Security Council of November 22. 1967, so that the consequences of aggression are liquidated.


Both sides considered that all international problems, including border disputes must be settled by peaceful negotiations and that the use of force or the threat of use of force is impermissible for their settlement.


Both sides declare that they are strongly in favour of an early agreement on general and complete disarmament, including both nuclear and conventional weapons, under effective international control.


The Minister of Foreign Affairs of the U.S.S.R. expressed his gratitude for the cordial reception given to him by the Government of India.






Source: Bangladesh Documents, Vol – II, p. 156 - 158