The world’s largest democracy won’t play ball. Since Russia invaded Ukraine a year ago, an alliance of nations stretching from Colombia to Cambodia has condemned the war, slapped unprecedented sanctions on Moscow and sent billions of dollars of aid and weapons to Kyiv. Not India. As G20 foreign ministers meet in Delhi today, the hosts remain firmly on the fence, despite 12 months of diplomatic cajoling by the West. Prime Minister Narendra Modi has called for a ceasefire but still refuses to assign blame for the bloodshed. In a meeting with Vladimir Putin in September, Modi called their countries’ friendship “unbreakable.” And while Modi has spoken of his belief in territorial integrity and said “it is not a time for war”, his concerns about the conflict have tended to focus on global food and energy prices. On the anniversary of the invasion last week, India again abstained in a UN General Assembly vote condemning Russian aggression. Delhi’s ambivalence points to a unique relationship with Moscow. It also shows what a powerful player India has become on the global stage.
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