MOSCOW: External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar on Thursday held separate meetings with his Uzbek and Kazakh counterparts and agreed to cooperate with the key Central Asian countries on regional concerns and security.
Jaishankar is here on a four-day visit to Russia to attend a meeting of the foreign ministers of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO).
He held a cordial meeting with his Uzbek counterpart Abdulaziz Kamilov in the morning.
"Began the day with a cordial meeting with Uzbek FM @a_h_kamilov," Jaishankar tweeted.
"Agreed to coordinate closely on regional concerns. Will take forward our growing development partnership. Appreciate Uzbekistan's vital role in our Central Asian engagement," he said.
On Wednesday, Jaishankar had separate meetings with his Tajik and Kyrgyz counterparts and agreed to bolster India's strategic ties with the two Central Asian countries.
Relations between Uzbekistan and India have their roots deep in history.
There are frequent references to Kamboja in Sanskrit and Pali literature, which is stated to include parts of present-day Uzbekistan, according to the Indian Embassy in Tashkent.
Sakas participated in Mahabharata on the side of Kauravas. Ancient trade route Uttarpath passed through Uzbekistan. India had close interaction with Uzbekistan during the Soviet times. Indian leaders often visited Tashkent and other places.
Prime Minister, Shri Lal Bahadur Shastri passed away in Tashkent on January 11, 1966 after signing the Tashkent declaration with Pakistan.
Later, he also met Kazakh counterpart FM Mukhtar Tileuberdi.
"Happy to meet my Kazakh counterpart FM Mukhtar Tileuberdi before the SCO summit," Jaishankar tweeted.
"Discussed our trade and energy exchanges. Will continue to work closely on peacekeeping. And cooperate on regional peace and security," he said.
Relations between India and Kazakhstan are ancient and historical going back to more than 2000 years.
India was one of the first countries to recognise the independence of Kazakhstan, which declared independence in December 1991.
Diplomatic relations between the two nations were established in February 1992.