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US Says it Has Raised Concerns with India About its Ties with Russia

Translator

Tempo.co

9 July 2024 14:27 WIB

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi (left) and Russian President Vladimir Putin (right) are seen shaking hands and smiling during their meeting at the Novo-Ogaryovo state residence near Moscow, Russia July 8, 2024. (Photo: Sputnik/Sergei Bobylyov/Pool via REUTERS)

TEMPO.CO, Washington - The United States has raised concerns with India about its relationship with Russia amid Moscow's invasion of Ukraine, a U.S. State Department spokesperson Matthew Miller told reporters on Monday, July 8, 2024, in response to questions about a meeting between Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Russian President Vladimir Putin.

Miller was responding to a reporter's question about the meeting between Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Russian President Vladimir Putin.

The Russian leader welcomed Modi on Monday evening, July 8 at his residence outside the capital Moscow ahead of official talks between delegations from the two countries in the Kremlin. The two will focus on cooperation in the energy, trade and fertilizer production and supply sectors.

Miller said the US had urged India to make clear that any resolution to the conflict in Ukraine must respect the United Nations (UN) Charter and the territorial integrity and sovereignty of Ukraine.

“India is a strategic partner with whom we have had a full and honest dialogue, including our concerns regarding relations with Russia,” he said in a press briefing recorded and posted on the US State Department website.

India has faced pressure from the West to distance itself from Moscow after Russia invaded Ukraine. New Delhi has thus far resisted that pressure, citing its longstanding ties with Russia and its economic needs.

Modi met Putin in Russia on Monday in the prime minister's first visit since Russia invaded Ukraine in February 2022. In a post on social media platform X, the prime minister said his talks with Putin "will surely go a long way in further cementing the bonds of friendship" between the two countries.

Russia has been India's largest weapons supplier since the Soviet Union days. However, India has also been seeking other options, as the Ukraine war hobbled Russia's ability to supply munitions and spares.

Washington in recent years has looked to woo New Delhi with political analysts saying the U.S. sees India as a counter to China in the Asia-Pacific.

While the West has tried to isolate Putin, China, India and powers in the Middle East, Africa and Latin America have continued to build ties.

Miller said he observed Modi's public statements to find out what he talked about in his meetings with Putin.

“We have expressed directly to India our concerns regarding their relationship with Russia. "Therefore, we hope that India and any other country, when they engage with Russia, will make it clear that Russia must respect the UN Charter, must respect Ukraine's sovereignty and territorial integrity," he said.

REUTERS | TEMPO.CO

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