India, Russia may talk over Doklam standoff before BRICS summit


New Delhi: The government is in touch with Russia over the Sino-Indian military standoff at Doklam ahead of the upcoming BRICS summit in China, as per sources.

This was obvious also in the way India reached out earlier this year to Russia to convince China to drop its opposition to India’s bid for membership of Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG).

In recent BRICS preparatory meetings, Indian officials discussed with their Russian counterparts the situation at Doklam in Bhutan, reiterating India’s position that by constructing a road China was unilaterally changing the status quo and that this had serious security implications for India.

However there have no official announcements of the participation of PM Narendra Modi in the BRICS summit, which will be held September 3-5 in Xiamen in China, Russia is confident that the event will turn out to be successful despite the tension prevailing at Doklam.

In that context, it may be significant to mention here that China has continued to stall the meeting of Russia-India-China (RIC) trilateral foreign ministers’ meeting which was scheduled earlier this year in April. Even though Beijing denied it, the decision to pull out of the meeting in April was widely seen as China’s way of getting back at India for hosting Dalai Lama in Arunachal Pradesh.

Despite Russia having worked actively to keep the RIC mechanism alive, the annual meeting couldn’t take place this year because of “differences over dates”. While India doesn’t expect Moscow to come out in open with support for its position on Doklam, it won’t mind the Russians working through diplomatic channels to convince Beijing to stop constructing road on disputed territory.

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