Prime Minister Narendra Modi talked to his Ethiopian counterpart Dr. Abiy Ahmed Ali over the phone on Wednesday to discuss the COVID-19 pandemic and cooperation on the same. PM Modi recalled the close ties between India and Ethiopia and the excellent development partnership between the two nations, the Ministry of External Affairs said in a statement.
"The two leaders discussed the domestic, regional and global challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic, and expressed solidarity with each other during the health crisis," the statement added. PM Modi also assured India's support to Ethiopia through the supply of essential medicines and ameliorating the economic impact of the pandemic and wished Ethiopians' success in the fight against COVID-19.
Spoke to PM Dr. Abiy Ahmed Ali. We discussed the COVID-19 situation. India stands in solidarity with our friends in Ethiopia as well as other countries in Africa, and will be a reliable partner to provide essential medical supplies and other assistance to handle the crisis.— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) May 6, 2020
India has so far reported nearly 50,000 COVID-19 cases and has passed the 1,500-mark death toll. Ethiopia, on the other hand, reported 17 new cases on Wednesday, taking the number of confirmed cases in the country 162. The majority of COVID-19 cases in Ethiopia are in the capital Addis Ababa.
The conversation with Ethiopia's PM is the latest in a host of exchanges PM Modi had with foreign leaders over the last few weeks. He has interacted with most national leaders of neighbouring countries as well as multilateral blocs like G20, SAARC, Non-Aligned Movement (NAM), etc. India has assured its friendly neighbours and other allies of cooperation and has continued assisting foreign nations in a show of solidarity amid the pandemic that has infected over 3.6 million people worldwide.
Recently, India contributed towards medical and food supplies to several smaller nations and has exported vast sums of most-sought drugs like Hydroxychloroquine (HCQ) and paracetamol. PM Modi has consistently stayed in touch with many world leaders, especially of those countries which host a significant Indian diaspora.