The External Affairs Minister of India S. Jaishankar who is on a tour to the U.S. defended India’s right to buy Russian arms. India is looking to buy a missile defense system from Russia to which the U.S. has objected and have threatened to put sanctions.
A good conversation with @SecPompeo focusing on the further progress of our bilateral relations. Also discussed important regional and global issues. Welcomed the continuing development of a key partnership. pic.twitter.com/cckktoXt1X— Dr. S. Jaishankar (@DrSJaishankar) October 1, 2019
The minister said, “That freedom of choice is ours, and we think it’s in everybody’s interest to recognize that, in the context of India’s willingness to procure S-400 defense system from Russia.
Ahead of his meeting with Secretary of state for the U.S. Jaishankar said that the sourcing of military equipment — is very much a sovereign right. He further added said that, “We would not like any state to tell us what to buy or not to buy from Russia any more than we would like any state to tell us to buy or not buy from America”.
As a result of Russia’s military involvement in Ukraine and Syria the U.S. imposes sanctions on countries that indulge in major arms purchase with Russia. Earlier U.S.A’s NATO ally Turkey fueled its anger by purchasing the same defense system from Russia that India is planning.
On India’s stand on Iran especially after U.S sanctions on oil imports from Iran, the minister said, ” We view Iran from the east, and from the east Iran has been a very stable, status quo power”. India is actively involved with Iran bilaterally.
India has been teaming up with Iran to expand Iran’s Chabahar port, a way to ensure a supply route to Afghanistan that bypasses Pakistan.