Prime Minister Narendra Modi will on July 9, 2020 address the India Global Week in UK. According to reports, PM may lay out numerous investment and manufacturing opportunities that India is offering for the post-Covid world at this platform, described as one of the biggest international events on India’s globalisation.
Though the event is about trade and investments, trust and goodwill are the foundations on which any country can gain the confidence of others. In this background, it is interesting to look at how the major powers of the world have sided with India in the recent stand-off with China at the Ladakh border. Some countries expressed solidarity with India openly while the others did it subtly.
United States of America
USA appreciated India’s move to ban 59 Chinese apps. The US moved its troops towards South China Sea. Though it has not singled-out China’s aggression with India for this specific move, the world largely saw it as support to India. In fact, White House officials asserted that the US military “will continue to stand strong” with regards to the conflict between India and China or anywhere else.
Japan backed India and issued a statement wherein it stated its opposition to any “unilateral attempt to change the status quo” on the LAC. Japanese ambassador Satoshi Suzuki also tweeted “Japan also hopes for peaceful resolution through dialogues. Japan opposes any unilateral attempts to change the status quo.”
The support from France came in a subtle way. French defence minister Florence Parly conveyed steadfast and friendly support in her letter to India’s Defence Minister Rajnath Singh on June 29. France also expressed “deep solidarity” over the death of 20 Indian soldiers in a violent-face-off with Chinese troops along the LAC on June 15.
Not a long time ago, Australia was seen as an ally of China. The Corona crisis and the bitter behaviour of China during the crisis made Australia realise that their partnership is not based on mutual respect. The country which has a significant role to play in the Indian Ocean has entered into a strategic partnership with India very recently. Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison referred to the India-China standoff when he launched Australia’s 2020 Defence Strategic Update and 2024 Structure Plan which provides for a massive defence spending.
Though UK did not raise a direct support pitch for India, it issued a statement saying, “We encourage China and India to engage in dialogue on issues relating to the border – violence is in no one’s interest.” If one puts this with its stinging comment against China over Hong Kong issue, that leaves no doubt on who the UK considers ‘violent’.
Russia’s support for India need not be measured from what is said or remains unsaid on this issue. The fact that it facilitated Defence Minister Rajnath Singh’s visit amidst the LAC stand-off, not bothering about what China thinks, was widely seen as an act of support to India.
Though the India Global Week event at UK is not about strategic partnership but of trade and investments, the LAC stand-off is relevant for the reason that it has already shown the trust that India enjoys among global powers.