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Russia-India partnership second to none

Russia’s partnership with India is “second to none” and cannot be compared with its relationship with Pakistan, Russian Ambassador Nikolay Kudashev said.

Asked about Russia’s two-week military drill in October with Pakistan near the Russian town of Minralney Vody, he said there is no comparison between ties with India and Pakistan and that the purpose of the drills was counter-terror cooperation.

Russia partnership with India is second to none while it has a normal inter-state relationship with Pakistan. Russia favours “space” for all stakeholders in the region like India, Japan, the U.S. and Australia for deeper cooperation in the Indo-Pacific. There should “open cooperation” among all countries.

Washington has been pressing for strengthening Indo-U.S. cooperation in the Indo-Pacific region.

Japan’s Foreign Minister Taro Kono said recently that Tokyo favours a dialogue between Japan, the U.S., India and Australia to further boost strategic partnership.

The tri-services exercise between India and Russia were conducted from October 19 to 29. More than 900 soldiers, sailors and air warriors participated in the exercise along with over 1,000 personnel from the Russian defence forces. A senior official said no decision has been taken on whether the tri-services exercise will be an annual feature.