Pompeo visits India amid disputes

By Lu Wenao Source:Global Times Published: 2019/6/26 22:18:40

Delhi is seeking its own road to develop: analyst

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo (left) listens as Subrahmanyam Jaishanka, India's foreign minister, speaks during a news conference at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in New Delhi, India, on Wednesday. Photo: VCG

US Secretary of State Michael Pompeo is visiting India to mend ties between the two countries, but analysts believe the visit is unlikely to restore the balance amid disputes between the two countries.  

"Pompeo is trying to soothe India after the two countries had frictions recently," Wang Dehua, head of the Institute of South and Central Asia Studies, Shanghai Municipal Center for International Studies, told the Global Times on Wednesday.  "But the US is unlikely to win India back as New Delhi is seeking its own road to develop."

India imposed retaliatory tariffs on US goods on June 15, two weeks after US President Donald Trump announced an end to preferential trade treatment for India over the trade barriers.

After meeting with Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Indian Minister of External Affairs Subrahmanyam Jaishankar on Wednesday, Pompeo said "We address trade differences in good spirit," but did not offer anything specific. 

What has made India more uncomfortable is that the sanction waivers for oil purchases from Iran have expired. India has deep strategic relations with Tehran and Washington, who have been at loggerheads in the past few weeks.

"India has tried to negotiate with other oil-producing countries but the price is too high," Wang said. "India may seek an extension of the waivers with the US."

India's arms deal with Russia on the S-400 defense missile system has also rattled the US, as it threatens to sanction countries buying the Russian weapons. 

At a press conference with Jaishankar, Pompeo said the US wants India to be able to provide security for itself, but Wang said it is a chance to woo India to purchase US military equipment to replace its Russian-made arms. 

Raveesh Kumar, spokesperson of India's Ministry of External Affairs, said in a tweet that Modi and Trump will meet on the sidelines of the G20 Summit, in Osaka, Japan on Friday and Saturday. 

C. Raja Mohan, director of the National University of Singapore's Institute of South Asian Studies, warned that India is unlikely to bring negotiations with the US to a close.

"The key to a successful engagement with the US is to keep negotiations going and make progress whenever one can," he wrote in an Indian Express column. 

"Americans are always ready to split the difference and move on. Delhi has been notorious for its inability to bring any negotiation to a close."

Posted in: EYE ON WORLD

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