Saturday, 17 November, 2018


India, Russia conclude S-400 missile deal

Putin to Trump ‘Donald look into mirror to find culprit for surge in oil prices Mike Segar Reuters
Bennie Garza | 06 October, 2018, 13:23

After signing a pact with Russian President Vladimir Putin for ISRO's ambitious human space mission project called "Gaganyaan" on Friday, Prime Minister Narendra Modi that Russia has committed full support to the initiative.

Putin added that Russian Federation will contribute to the implementation of "Make in India" initiative.

Russian President Vladimir Putin who arrived in New Delhi on Thursday is accompanied by a high-level delegation comprising Deputy Prime Minister Yuri Borisov, Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov and Trade and Industry Minister Denis Manturov among others during his two-day visit. India had last month firmly told the USA at the "2+2" dialogue that it takes note of the historic nature of India-Russia defence relationship as also legacy issues and keep the missile deal out of the sanctions' regime.

The deal signed on Friday is a setback to U.S. efforts to "isolate" Russian Federation and it would now have to choose between "punishing" India or agreeing to a waiver.

The South China Morning Post (SCMP) also noted that the India-Russia agreement had raised eyebrows in both the United States and China. For all the warm words, ties with Moscow are a lot less central to Delhi than they were during the Cold War years, as India has diversified arms purchases, closing $15 billion of deals with the United States over the last decade.

He said both nations will continue to work together to eliminate any barriers that halt the movement of goods and services.

U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said during a visit to New Delhi last month that discussions were continuing over whether to grant waivers to India from U.S. sanctions on Russian Federation and Iran, India's second-largest oil supplier. "For Moscow, the inking of a major defence deal with one of Asia's key growing powers is no small matter".

However, Washington is in a hard position when it comes to New Delhi, seeking to bolster ties with India to counter China's growing assertiveness while maintaining pressure on Russian Federation. Various U.S. officials, including U.S. Secretary of Defense James Mattis, have openly spoken out against possible sanctions on India. He also said that the two leaders discussed the resulting situation after USA withdrawal from Iran nuclear deal.

Experts fear India is flexing its military muscles as Mr Modi stands up to China's People Liberation Army and Beijing's influence around the Indian Ocean.

Strategically, Russia has facilitated India's membership in the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation and endorsed India's long-held demand for a permanent seat at the UN Security Council. "It is fulfills a certain defence requirement of the country and, therefore, the government has taken the decision, obviously, in the national interest", he said.

The eight agreements that were signed on Friday spanned diverse areas ranging from space and nuclear cooperation to railways and agriculture.

"Even if we do not take into account the security and economic consequences of bowing to USA demands, it would create a awful precedent".

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