COVID-19: EU, French president express solidarity with India

·2-min read

New Delhi, Apr 23 (PTI) As India battles a massive spike in coronavirus cases amid an oxygen shortage, the European Union (EU) and French President Emmanuel Macron expressed solidarity with the country on Friday and offered their support to it in dealing with the situation.

'I want to send a message of solidarity to the Indian people, facing a resurgence of COVID-19 cases. France is with you in this struggle, which spares no-one. We stand ready to provide our support,' Macron said.

His message was posted on Twitter by French Ambassador to India Emmanuel Lenain.

President of the European Council Charles Michel said India and the EU will discuss possible cooperation in fighting the pandemic at a virtual summit between the two sides on May 8.

'The #EU stands in solidarity with Indian people amidst resurgent #COVID19 pandemic. The fight against the virus is a common fight. We will discuss our support and cooperation at EU-India Leaders' meeting on 8 May with @narendramodi and @antoniocostapm,' he said in a tweet.

The 16th India-EU summit will be held virtually on May 8.

In a separate development, External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar held a virtual meeting on Friday with the Executive Vice-President of the European Commission, Margrethe Vestager, on preparations for the summit In a tweet, Jaishankar described the meeting as 'warm and productive'.

'Appreciated the support offered by EU on Covid challenges currently faced by India. Confident that EU will help strengthen our capabilities at this critical juncture,' he said.

India is struggling with a second wave of the coronavirus infection and hospitals in several states are reeling under a shortage of medical oxygen and beds in view of the rising number of COVID-19 cases.

The country recorded a single-day rise of 3.32 lakh coronavirus cases and 2,263 fatalities, according to official data released on Friday. PTI MPB RC