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India's S-400 missile defence deal with India no one else's business, says new Russia envoy

Taking a defiant stand reflective of Moscow's stance on Ukraine and the current standoff with the West, newly appointed Russian Ambassador to India Denis Alipov said threats of US sanctions against India will not affect the military-technical cooperation between the two countries as it was the business of "no one else"

Feb 10, 2022
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India's S-400 missile defence deal (Photo: FirstPost)

Taking a defiant stand reflective of Moscow's stance on Ukraine and the current standoff with the West, newly appointed Russian Ambassador to India Denis Alipov said threats of US sanctions against India will not affect the military-technical cooperation between the two countries as it was the business of "no one else". 

Russia and India signed a USD 5.43 billion contract for the supply of S-400 in October 2018. The US has repeatedly asked India to withdraw from the deal, indicating that the Russian S-400 systems may trigger Countering America's Adversaries Through Sanctions Act (CAATSA) sanctions.

"So far, they (the US sanctions threats against India) have not had any effect. I guess they will not affect," Alipov said in an interview with Sputnik, the Russian news agency, commenting on the military-technical cooperation between Russia and India.

Last month, India had launched a deployment of the first regiment of S-400 Triumph surface-to-air missile defence system, with the first unit to begin operation in April. US State Department, in response, said that Washington is in contact with the Indian authorities on the possibility of imposing sanctions over the air defense systems, Sputnik reported.

The envoy recalled that New Delhi had repeatedly said that the S-400 purchase deal with Russia is in the interests of its security, that India pursues an independent foreign policy and negatively perceives the pressure that is being put on it.

"The S-400 deal is the business of our two countries and no one else. Therefore, there is no reason to believe that the Indian position will change in the future. This project is being implemented. Deliveries are carried out," Alipov added.

The CAATSA is a United States federal law that imposed sanctions on Iran, North Korea, and Russia. Countering America's Adversaries Through Sanctions Act CAATSA authorises the US administration to impose sanctions on countries that purchase major defence hardware from Russia in response to Russia's annexation of Crimea in 2014 and its alleged meddling in the 2016 US presidential elections.

Recently the US hinted it might be reviewing its sanctions stand with James O’Brien, the nominee for Coordinator for Sanctions Policy, saying that in considering sanctions on India, “there are important geostrategic considerations, particularly with the relationship to China” and “we have to look at what the balance is.”

(SAM)

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