The Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) has said India is monitoring the situation in eastern Ukraine where a tense military situation has erupted after Russia placed a large number of troops and heavy weapons along Ukraine’s frontiers, triggering worldwide fear of an imminent military action.
India’s comments come in the backdrop of Russia’s discussion with the permanent members of the UN Security Council. The Embassy of Russia in a statement said the military situation is linked with the West’s quest for dominating the energy sector.
“We have been closely following the developments relating to Ukraine including ongoing high-level discussions between Russia and the U.S. Our Embassy in Kyiv is also monitoring local developments. We call for a peaceful resolution of the situation through sustained diplomatic efforts for long term peace and stability in the region and beyond,” said MEA spokesperson Arindam Bagchi.
The military situation has prompted the United States and the UK to evacuate their officials from Ukrainian capital Kyiv, though India has not evacuated its diplomats. Russia received a set of proposals on Wednesday from the U.S. to de-escalate the situation that however, fell short of resolving the situation. Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov has said Washington’s response “is an examplary documment of diplomatic courtesy whereas the NATO’s document is filled with NATO’s pride”. Russia has been demanding that the United States should give “legal guarantees” to ensure that NATO will not be expanded eastward. Deputy Chief of Mission of the Embassy of Russia Roman Babushkin on Friday said the tension is being generated to prevent Europe from collaborating with Russia on the energy front.
“Tensions are artificially created provoking the conflict to disable Europe from cooperating with Russia which is being increasingly sanctioned. This is a clear act of unlawful competition and narrowminded geopolitics,” said Mr. Babushkin. This statement indicates the underlying tension between the U.S. and Russia over the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline that is aimed at supplying Russian gas to central Europe. U.S. perceives the pipeline as a Russian geopolitical tool to establish Kremlin’s control over Europe. Further U.S. sanctions are likely to be aimed at several Russian projects including the ambitious gas pipeline to Germany. “The West is yet to respond to the Russian red lines with regard to the non-expansion of NATO eastwards, non-deployment of offensive weapons near the Russian borders and refusal of provocative military activities. Russia has no logic and interest to attack anyone - we are for pragmatic and mutually respectful dialogue,” said Mr Babushkin.