A file photo of External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar. Photograph:( ANI )
Many Gulf countries have requested essential medicines like Hydroxychloroquine and paracetamol with New Delhi sending aid and supplies to the region on a commercial basis
Gulf countries have assured India that they will have zero tolerance to any attempts to create discord after a sudden spike was seen in a number of fake Twitter handles of Arabic royalties emerged tweeting anti-India material.
It was conveyed to external affairs minister S Jaishankar during his phone conversations with foreign ministers of five West Asian countries to greet them on the beginning of the holy month of Ramazan.
India's EAM spoke to the foreign minister of Saudi Arabia and Oman on April 23 and FMs of Qatar, UAE and Palestine on April 24. He had earlier spoken to FMs of Bahrain, Kuwait and Algeria.
Sources told WION, "Gulf countries are very sensitive to attempts to create social disharmony and have zero tolerance in this regard." and "negative social media posts from fake handles have come in for adverse attention of these governments."
Earlier this week it emerged that a Twitter handle @ pak_fauj had changed its name to Omani Royalty and tweeted anti-India propaganda which was quoted by many in Pakistan. The Omani Princess issued a statement later clarifying someone is impersonating her.
During the EAM's conversation with FMs of the Gulf region both sides realised that such attempts are also "intended to create discord in the special relations that exist between India and countries of the region"
The foreign minister of the Gulf cooperation council countries also appreciated the "rich contributions made by Indians living and working in their respective countries to its growth and prosperity" with EAM thanking them for going the "extra mile in taking care of the welfare of Indians in these trying times".
Jointly dealing with the COVID-19 crisis dominated the talks with appreciation being expressed for India for sending medicines.
Many Gulf countries have requested essential medicines like Hydroxychloroquine and paracetamol with New Delhi sending aid and supplies to the region on a commercial basis. India is sending Hydroxychloroquine to Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Oman, Qatar, Egypt and Palestine.
As part of outreach to the extended neighbourhood, India sent its rapid response teams to Kuwait to help the country deal with the COVID-19 crisis.
The discussion also focused on the oil prices and its implications given the fact that India is a key market for crude from the Gulf.
New Delhi has also told them that it will give "sympathetic consideration" to the request of some Gulf countries to allow their medical personnel stranded in India to go back.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi has spoken to nine West Asian leaders on COVID-19. These include Saudi Arabia, UAE, Qatar, Kuwait, Bahrain, Oman, Palestine, Jordan and Eqypt.
During the talks, PM Modi spoke at length on the priority New Delhi attached to "Think West" and emphasised on the need for coordinated efforts to combat the COVID-19 pandemic.