Home / News / World /  ‘Not in best interest...’: What US has to say on India's continued investment in Russian equipment

‘Not in best interest...’: What US has to say on India's continued investment in Russian equipment

The European Union is set to propose fresh sanctions on Russia in response to news of atrocities against civilians in Ukraine, even as Moscow’s military blunders have raised hopes of an eventual peace deal (AFP)Premium
The European Union is set to propose fresh sanctions on Russia in response to news of atrocities against civilians in Ukraine, even as Moscow’s military blunders have raised hopes of an eventual peace deal (AFP)

  • United States has explicitly expressed the desire that New Delhi scales down its dependence on Russian military equipment

Amid escalating global tensions, United States Defence Secretary Lloyd Austin told lawmakers on Tuesday that it is not in India’s best interest to continue investing in Russian military equipment. Additionally, the US lawmaker underscored the American desire that New Delhi scales down its dependence on Russian military equipment. 

“We continue to work with them (India) to ensure that they understand that it's not in their -- we believe that -- it's not in their best interest to continue to invest in Russian equipment," Austin told the members of the House Armed Services Committee during a Congressional hearing on the annual defence budget, as per news agency PTI report.

“And our requirement going forward is that they downscale the types of equipment that they're investing in and look to invest more in the types of things that will make us continue to be compatible," Austin said. 

The defence secretary was responding to a question from Congressman Joe Wilson, a friend of India in the Congress who, of late, has been critical of India deciding to take an independent position on the Russian invasion of Ukraine, according to PTI report.

“Gruesomely, our treasured ally India, the world's largest democracy, is choosing to align itself with the Kremlin by choosing Russian weapons systems over American and allied options," Wilson said. 

“What weapons platforms could we offer through the foreign military sales program that would incentivise rush -- Indian leaders to reject Putin and align with its natural allies of democracy?" he asked. The United States has the finest weapons systems in the world and the most advanced weapons systems in the world, Austin said. “So, we have a range of capabilities that we can provide or offer (to India)," said the defence secretary. “I look forward to you continuing to work with the great people of India. And what a great ally they can be if we eliminate some of the restrictions on sales," Wilson said. 

(With inputs from agencies)

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