US National Security Council coordinator John Kirby. (Image: ANI)
Washington: US National Security Council coordinator John Kirby said on Friday (local time) that India was invited to the G7 because the agenda is “deep and varied” and “it is not about trying to isolate them from Russia”. .
“It is not about trying to tear them apart or away from any association or partnership they may have with another country. That’s not the goal here. The goal is to unite around a set of common principles and initiatives,” Kirby said, adding that “the G7 seeks to advance in terms of climate change, energy and food security.”
The NSC coordinator made these remarks while responding to a question on the motto of inviting developing countries like India, Indonesia and South Africa to the G7 summit in a press briefing on Friday.
Earlier, amid reports of an increase in Indian energy imports from Russia, Kirby said that India is a very important strategic partner in the Indo-Pacific region and the US allows Indian leaders to speak about their economic policies.
In a press briefing on Tuesday, Kirby said the US values this bilateral relationship with India but Washington wants international pressure to mount on Russia amid the Ukraine dispute.
“India is also a very important strategic partner in the Indo-Pacific region. And there are many ways in which partnerships represent themselves, both in defense and in security, economic as well. I think we will let Indian leaders speak about their economic policies.”
“All I can tell you is that we value this bilateral relationship with India and we want that obviously each country has to make these decisions for itself. These are sovereign decisions but we want international attention to Russia. Put as much pressure on the level as possible.”
India has increased energy imports from Russia in recent weeks despite global sanctions on Moscow. US officials have conveyed to India that there are no restrictions on energy imports from Russia, but they do not want to see a rapid boom.
Several institutional mechanisms have been established for the development of India-Russia economic cooperation.
But the Ukraine war and subsequent sanctions imposed by Western countries have proved to be a hindrance to trade.
External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar earlier this month hit back at unfair criticism of Indian oil purchases from Russia amid the Ukraine war that has hit the world economy.
Defending India’s oil imports from Russia, Jaishankar stressed that it is important to understand how the Ukraine conflict is affecting developing countries. He also questioned why only India is being questioned while Europe continues to import gas from Russia amid the Ukraine war.
Asked if India’s oil imports from Russia are not funding the Ukraine war, Jaishankar said, “Look, I don’t want to argue. If India is funding Russia’s oil, then war funding.” nurturing… tell me, so buying russian gas is not money for war? it’s just indian money and russian oil coming to india which is funding the war not russian gas coming into europe Is there no funding? Let’s have a little hand.”
At the GLOBSEC 2022 Bratislava Forum in Slovakia, Jaishankar said, the package of sanctions imposed by the EU has been imposed keeping in mind the interests of some European countries.
“…if you can be considerate of yourself, you can also be considerate of other people. If someone says Europe, if we have to manage this in a way the impact on the economy is not painful, it Freedom should exist for other people as well,” he said.
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