India, Russia sign deal on information security

Alexander Fomin (left), head of the Russia's Federal Service for Military-Technical Cooperation, and India's Ambassador to Russia, Pankaj Saran, in Goa on Saturday.  

India and Russia on Saturday sealed a deal on ‘information security’ aimed at countering terrorism, drug trafficking and other illegal cross-border activities.

During a bilateral summit between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and President Vladimir Putin, India expressed appreciation for Russia’s “unequivocal condemnation” of the cross border terror attack in Uri.

“Russia’s clear stand on the need to combat terrorism mirrors our own. We deeply appreciate Russia’s understanding and support of our actions to fight cross border terrorism, that threatens our entire region. We both affirmed the need for zero tolerance in dealing with terrorists and their supporters,” Mr. Modi said.

The Russian position on cross-border terrorism from Pakistan is significant since it had held a joint military exercise with Pakistan in the last week of September. Foreign Secretary S. Jaishankar said Russia’s ties with Pakistan will “never” lead to anything that might be contrary to India’s interest. Echoing India’s concerns, Sergey Chemezov, head of Rostec State Corporation said Russia does not intend to sell any military hardware to Pakistan at “present”.

“The military exercises in September this year were directly connected with modernising counter terror operations in Pakistan,” Mr Chemezov told the media.

Committed to ties

The 17th bilateral summit also saw India express its commitment to ties with Moscow.

Prime Minister Modi, said, “An old friend is better than two new friends,” highlighting the “special and privileged strategic partnership” between India and Russia. The summit also saw both Prime Minister Modi and President Putin discuss ways to prevent “safe havens” for terrorism .

“Terrorism is a global issue. The [country that is the] epicentre of terrorism is near India. But the actions of that country [Pakistan] is having global impacts. We agreed on the need to have an international legal framework on terrorism and better border management” said Mr Jaishankar.

Kudankulam units

In his statement, President Vladimir Putin highlighted Russia’s “stable” approach to ties with India and said his government will ensure steady energy cooperation with India to support the expanding Indian economy. “Sometimes differences appear in some projects over a period due to currency devaluation. But we commit to maintain a steady approach to bilateral projects with India,” said President Putin and added, “we are working on joint development of Sukhoi super jets and passenger aircraft.” Before beginning official statements, both the leaders started the ground laying work for Units III & IV of the Kudankulam Nuclear Power Plant.

(With inputs from Dinakar Peri)

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Printable version | Jun 18, 2021 12:50:17 AM |

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