When Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov is on a two-day visit to India, US Deputy NSA Daleep Singh, an Indian origin American has said from the soil of New Delhi that the US would not like to see a rapid acceleration of India’s imports of energy and other commodities from Russia. He was replying to a question about India’s decision to purchase discounted oil from Russia.
Pointing to the geopolitical realities seen from the American perspective, Daleep Singh also cautioned India that India should not expect Russia to come to its defence in case China violates the Line of Actual Control (LAC) as there is “no limits” partnership developping between Moscow and Beijing.
He indirectly warned the countries actively attempting to “circumvent or backfill” American sanctions against Moscow by saying that there will be consequences for such countries. Though declined to share in public the nature of these consequences.
He also said that the US would not like to see any country engaging in financial transactions with the Russian central bank. The US Deputy NSA held a series of meetings with Indian interlocutors including Foreign Secretary Harsh Vardhan Shringla.
The remarks gain significance in the light of increasing disquiet among Western powers over India not criticising Russia over its attack on Ukraine.
Mr Singh Maintained that the US is supporting Ukraine’s fight for freedom because violation by Putin is putting the core principles of peace and security all over the world at stake. Mr Daleep Singh went as far to say that if the democracies do not stand up in solidarity to defend the core principles, the costs and risk to all become larger.
The US Deputy NSA said the impact of unchecked Russian aggression could be devastating with uncertainties around the world and the signal that would be sent to autocrats all over the world, bullying their neighbours, perhaps right on India’s doorstep.