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India aims to reshape regional energy balance in 2021 | India News


NEW DELHI: In a year marked by the coronavirus pandemic, India has shown a strong determination to expand its strategic influence by resetting the regional balance of power in the face of an increasingly complex geopolitical tangle of facing an aggressive China and dealing with the aftermath of the Taliban. rapid takeover in Kabul.
Distrustful of China’s politics and policies, India shifted gears to rejuvenate its strategic ties with key partners like the United States and Russia and focused on securing global support for its distinct Indo-Pacific strategy to control Beijing’s growing muscle flexion in the region.
As the bitter border standoff in eastern Ladakh has lasted for more than 18 months despite multiple rounds of diplomatic and military talks, India has made it clear to China that the two countries cannot simultaneously have a border. tense and high friction ”and excellent relations at the same time in all other areas.
India was also among the leading global voices that focused on mobilizing support from democratic nations to build resilient supply chains and create trusted technologies, an approach widely seen as aimed at minimizing reliance on with regard to China.
Another major challenge for India’s foreign policy was the complexity of the situation after the Taliban’s lightning military triumph and the seizure of power in Kabul on August 15 following the departure of US troops from Afghanistan.
Taken by surprise by the speed of the Taliban heavyweight through Afghanistan, India reached out to major world powers to develop a general framework to deal with the situation as it feared the war-torn country could become a hotbed for terrorist groups, including those with bases in Pakistan.
Under the Indian presidency, the United Nations Security Council adopted a resolution on August 30 demanding that Afghan territory not be used for terrorist purposes, calling for respect for human rights and calling for a negotiated political settlement of crisis.
Subsequently, the resolution became the basis for discussions on the Afghan crisis in various global forums and dialogues.
After the Taliban took power, India evacuated a total of 448 Indians and 206 Afghans from Afghanistan as part of its evacuation mission dubbed “Operation Devi Shakti”.
In November, India hosted a regional dialogue on Afghanistan attended by national security advisers from Russia, Iran and the five Central Asian countries.
Weeks later, India hosted foreign ministers from Central Asian countries in a conclave that called for immediate humanitarian aid to the Afghan people and a renewed demand for a “truly inclusive” government. in Kabul.
One of the main lessons from India’s diplomatic engagement in 2021 has been the significant expansion of the strategic partnership with the United States under the Biden administration which took power on January 20.
In March, US President Joe Biden hosted the first-ever Virtual Quad Leaders Summit which was followed by an in-person summit in Washington in September for which Prime Minister Narendra Modi visited the United States. .
During the visit, Modi had separate bilateral talks with Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris, covering a range of critical areas including tackling climate change and stepping up cooperation in the Indo-Pacific region. .
“I think the relationship between India and the United States – the greatest democracies in the world – is destined to be stronger, closer and closer. And I think that can benefit the whole world,” said Biden during the meeting with Modi.
India’s relations with Russia have also seen a major expansion, with the two sides signing 28 agreements to further expand relations at a summit between Modi and President Vladimir Putin in early December.
In the neighborhood, India’s relations with Bangladesh, Nepal, Bhutan, Sri Lanka and the Maldives have remained on an upward trajectory.
However, India’s relations with Pakistan remained unchanged as Islamabad continued to support cross-border terrorism to create unrest in Jammu and Kashmir.
India has also maintained its diplomatic offensive against Pakistan on the issue of terrorism and has remained firm in its position not to have talks with Islamabad until it stops cross-border terrorism.
At the end of the year, Foreign Minister Harsh Vardhan Shringla paid a two-day visit to Myanmar as part of India’s first high-level awareness campaign after that country’s military took ousted Aung San Suu Kyi’s democratically elected government in a February 1st coup.
In his meetings with the leaders of the dispensation from power, Shringla called for the restoration of democracy in the country.
India’s ties with Australia, France, Japan, Germany, the United Kingdom, Vietnam, the European Union, the G-20 and the African continent have also improved.
At the end of October, Modi traveled to Rome to attend the 16th G-20 summit. During the visit, he also met Pope Francis in the Vatican.
From Italy, Modi traveled to Glasgow to attend the COP26 summit where he made a big announcement that India will meet the goal of net zero emissions by 2070.
In February, the Foreign Office (MEA) had to deal with the situation resulting from criticisms of American singer Rihanna, Swedish climate activist Greta Thunberg, American actress Amanda Cerniand and several other world celebrities. during farmers’ demonstrations.
The MEA has reacted strongly to unfavorable comments from celebrities and activists around the world, saying the facts on the matter need to be checked before rushing to comment.
As India reeled in a devastating second wave of the coronavirus pandemic, countries around the world reached out to India by sending liquid medical oxygen (OMT), ventilators, oxygen concentrators and other medical supplies.
India has also played an important role in ensuring vaccine equity by sending approximately 10 crore doses to approximately 97 countries as part of its “Vaccine Maitri” initiative.
The country also advocated for a united global approach to deal with the pandemic with the Foreign Minister, saying it was not only a one-off shock to the international system, but that it was had also completely exposed all of its fault lines and gaps.
The year 2021 also saw the MEA accelerate its economic diplomacy with a clearer reorientation towards achieving concrete results. Indian missions and posts abroad have been passed on to promote the goal of promoting the three T’s – trade, tourism and technology.