US diplomat, Donald Lu said the Biden administration is attempting to persuade India to take a “clear stance” on the Russia-Ukraine crisis.
The news: Lu pointed out that the US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken has been on the frontlines of that battle, and that US President Joe Biden and other senior State Department officials have been holding a high-level talk with their Indian counterparts on the Ukraine situation.
- “India has focused on two things when trying to explain its position, one that it continues to want to leave on the table the possibility of a diplomatic resolution of this conflict. The second thing that they emphasize is India has 18,000 students still in Ukraine, and they are trying to work with both the Governments of Ukraine and Russia to safeguard those,” the top US diplomat stated.
- After abstaining from a UN vote condemning Russia’s invasion on Wednesday India received criticism from US lawmakers both Republicans and Democrats, in a heading of US relationship with India.
- Responding to criticism made by the lawmakers of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, Lu said, “Let me say that all of us have been working to urge India to take a clear position, a position opposed to Russia’s actions.”
- “The State Department continues to engage India closely to underscore the importance of a collective response and condemning Russia’s invasion,” he added.
- “So we’re making small steps and assure you we are on this and working every day to make sure that we are trying to close the gap between where we are and where our Indian partners are,” Lu said.
- Despite the fact that India has not taken a firm stance, the US claims to see an evolution in India’s public position.
- “So you may have seen yesterday, the Indian government said it would send an airlift of humanitarian supplies from India to Ukraine. That’s important. That’s a request that’s coming from Ukraine’s leadership. Second, it said in a UN session that it called for all states to abide by the UN Charter to respect the sovereignty and territory, the territorial integrity of other states. That wasn’t criticism of Russia, but a very clear reference to Russia’s violation of the UN Charter and violation of Ukraine’s sovereignty,” Lu said.
- Meanwhile, 141 nations voted in favour of the move condemning Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and five nations were against it, with 35 countries, including India, abstaining at the UN General Assembly.