UK’s Foreign Secretary Liz Truss in New Delhi to pressure India on Russian invasion
The United Kingdom’s Foreign Secretary Liz Truss is in New Delhi as part of a “diplomatic push” following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine as western states look to convince India to support them in condemning Moscow.
Truss is meeting with Indian foreign minister S. Jaishankar to discuss the Russian invasion among other issues.
Strengthening ties with India more important than it has ever been because we are living in more insecure world: UK Foreign Secretary Liz Truss— Press Trust of India (@PTI_News) March 31, 2022
Truss said that it is increasingly important for the UK to work with India in a "more insecure world", according to the Press Trust of India.
However, she added that she could not tell New Delhi how to react to the invasion as "India is a sovereign nation."
Before her meeting with Jaishankar, Truss had said that a stronger relationship with India would benefit global security and create jobs and opportunities in both countries, according to a UK government press release.
“This matters even more in the context of Russia’s unprovoked invasion of Ukraine and underlines the need for free democracies to work closer together in areas like defence, trade and cyber security,” she said.
Truss’s visit could be made awkward by the presence of Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, who arrived in the Indian capital on Thursday for scheduled talks with his Indian counterpart tomorrow.
There has been a flurry of diplomatic meetings in New Delhi following Russia’s invasion of its western neighbour. The foreign ministers of Mexico, Austria and Greece have all visited, as has the US Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs Victoria Nuland.
The UK and India are strong partners but have not seen eye-to-eye on Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. London has repeatedly condemned Vladimir Putin’s bloody invasion and have enforced sanctions against his regime.
India on the other hand is one of the few major powers that has refrained from criticising Moscow.
India and Russia have longstanding ties, and New Delhi is dependent on Moscow for the procurement and upkeep of nearly 60 percent of its defence hardware.
India continues to purchase oil from Russia, leading to criticism from the US and other Western states which have imposed sanctions on Moscow.