The White House has said it encourages Indian leaders to work together closely with the US to stand up against the Russian invasion of Ukraine. The comments follow the US announcement of an additional $ 800 million in security assistance to Ukraine for its resistance against the Russian invasion, termed as a “special military operation” by President Vladimir Putin.
Answering a question on how India and US are working together to bring peace in the region, White House press secretary Jen Psaki said “we remain in touch through a range of channels from our national security team with leaders in India, and continue to encourage leaders to work closely with us to stand up against President Putin’s invasion of Ukraine”.
Curiously, the US has issued a kind of waiver for India to import crude oil from Russia.
India has been walking a diplomatic tightrope on the Ukraine invasion as it abstained on the UN Security Council resolution that deplored Russia’s actions and called for immediate troops’ withdrawal from the region. India’s Permanent Representative to the UN TS Tirumurti, however, stressed the need to honour the UN Charter, international law and respect for the sovereignty and territorial integrity of states.
Psaki also addressed the speculations around the appointment of Eric Garcetti as the new US ambassador to India after a top Republican senator put on hold the nomination of the Los Angeles mayor. Garcetti was nominated by US President Joe Biden as the country’s ambassador to India in July last year but senator Chuck Grassley put a hold on the confirmation pending his own investigation of allegations into sexual allegations.
The White House press secretary said that the senator could not prevent a vote from moving forward on the floor and President Biden “believes he will be an excellent representative in India”.
“He (Grassley ) can convey his opposition as is the right of any senator. But Mayor Garcetti is out of committee, and we’re hoping to see a vote on the Senate floor soon,” she said.