Russia Is A Power With Enormous Tradition Of Statecraft: S Jaishankar

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Russia Is A Power With Enormous Tradition Of Statecraft: S Jaishankar

Foreign Minister S Jaishankar called Russia a power with an enormous tradition of statecraft

New Delhi:

Russia is a power with an enormous tradition of statecraft and it is turning more towards Asia or non-West parts of the world, External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar said on Friday, delving into current geopolitical developments and their fall-outs.

In an interactive session at the Raisina Dialogue, S Jaishankar, replying to a question on Moscow’s growing proximity with Beijing, said it makes sense to give Russia multiple options and that railroading it into a single option and criticising it for that would be like a self-fulfilling prophecy.

“I think it makes sense to give Russia multiple options. If we railroad Russia into a single option and say that’s really bad because that’s the outcome, then you are making it a self-fulfilling prophecy,” he said.

“Today it is important for other countries, especially in Asia to engage Russia,” Mr Jaishankar said.

“Russia is a power with an enormous tradition of statecraft. Such powers would never put themselves into a single relationship of an overwhelming nature. It would go against their grain,” he said.

The external affairs minister was asked to comment on intensification of ties between Russia and China and whether India was uncomfortable with it.

“What’s happened today with Russia essentially is that a lot of doors have been shut to Russia and the West. We know the reasons why. Russia is turning more to Asia or to parts of the world which are not West,” he said.

The external affairs minister suggested that policies of the West are bringing Russia and China closer.

“It’s kind of funny — on the one hand you have people who set policies (and) bring the two together and then you say beware of them coming together,” he said.

The question was asked by Michael Fullilove, Executive Director of Lowy Institute, Australia.

Mr Jaishankar’s comments came days after he said India has had a “stable” and “very friendly” relationship with Russia, and that Moscow never hurt New Delhi’s interests.

The ties between India and Russia remained strong notwithstanding Moscow’s invasion of Ukraine.

India’s import of Russian crude oil has gone up significantly despite increasing disquiet over it in many Western countries.

India has not yet condemned the Russian invasion of Ukraine and it has been maintaining that the crisis must be resolved through diplomacy and dialogue.

In his remarks, Mr Jaishankar also highlighted India’s G20 presidency and how it ensured induction of the African Union as a permanent member of the grouping.

He noted that if the G20 could be expanded, the permanent membership of the UN Security Council can also be increased.

“When the sort of smoke clears and people look back on this G20, it will surely be recognised for the fact that the African Union’s membership was agreed upon,” he said.

The external affairs minister also highlighted India’s foreign policy priorities including combating terrorism and attempting to ensure inclusive global welfare.

It could be millets, it could be yoga, it could be solar energy, it could be combating terrorism, it could be black money. You today see an India, which is really pushing and trying to get itself and its ideas on the global stage, he said.

(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)

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