Topics Covered: Bilateral, regional and global groupings and agreements involving India and/or affecting India’s interests.
Quad is U.S. anti-China game: Russia:
Russia has called the four-nation quadrilateral strategic dialogue or Quad as a “devious policy” by western powers to engage India in “anti-China games”.
What’s the issue?
It expressed concerns about the U.S. Indo-Pacific policy and criticised the Quad. Also, for the first time it has suggested that India-Russia ties could be affected by it.
What are Russia’s concerns?
- India has become an object of the western countries’ persistent, aggressive and devious policy as they are trying to engage it in anti-China games by promoting Indo-Pacific strategies, the so-called “Quad”.
- At the same time the West is attempting to undermine Russia’s close partnership and privileged relations with India. This is the goal of the U.S.’s very tough pressure on New Delhi in the MTC [military and technical cooperation] area.
- The incoming Biden administration is also expected to press harder on India against its purchase of the S-400 anti-missile system from Russia, which could attract U.S. sanctions.
- Overall, the U.S. and European countries are trying to “restore” the unipolar model with U.S. leadership.
What is Quad grouping?
The quadrilateral security dialogue includes Japan, India, United States and Australia.
- All four nations find a common ground of being the democratic nations and common interests of unhindered maritime trade and security.
The grouping traces its genesis to 2004 when the four countries came together to coordinate relief operations in the aftermath of the tsunami.
- It then met for the first time in 2007 on the sidelines of the Association of South East Asian Nations (ASEAN) summit.
- The intention was to enhance maritime cooperation between the four nations.
Significance of the grouping:
- Quad is an opportunity for like-minded countries to share notes and collaborate on projects of mutual interest.
- Members share a vision of an open and free Indo-Pacific. Each is involved in development and economic projects as well as in promoting maritime domain awareness and maritime security.
- It is one of the many avenues for interaction among India, Australia, Japan and the US and should not be seen in an exclusive context.
What are China’s views on the Quad?
There is a general understanding that the Quad would not take on a military dimension against any country. The strategic community in China, nevertheless, had branded it an emerging “Asian NATO”.
Notably, Japanese PM Shinzo Abe’s “Confluence of Two Seas” address to the Indian Parliament gave a fresh impetus to the Quad concept. This recognised the economic rise of India.
Why there is a need for formalisation?
Despite renewed efforts, the QUAD has faced criticism over its lack of formal structure. There have been calls for institutionalisation, a formal agreement to transform the group into a formidable anti-China bloc.
A lot has changed over the years. Each member state has faced the heat of China’s increased aggression.
- China has grown in might and influence and is keen on picking up fights.
- After attempting to influence Australia’s domestic policies, it slapped punitive tariffs on the country.
- It is engaged in what has become a routine border confrontation with India.
- China has flared up territorial disputes with Japan with regards to the Senkaku Islands and is battling a fully-fledged trade war with the United States.
- Quad- composition.
- When was it first proposed?
- Countries and important islands in the Indian Ocean region.
- Geographical overview of Indo-Pacific region.
- Important seas and straits in the region.
A formal revival and re-invigoration of the Quad is called for to maintain peace and tranquillity and to ensure observance of the UN Law of the Seas. Examine.
Sources: the Hindu.