‘Unfriendly forces trying to disrupt India-Russia ties’

India and Russia today admitted there may be some “unfriendly forces or actors” who may be trying to create hindrances in bilateral relations.

India-Russia ties were discussed threadbare as Home Minister Rajnath Singh held a meeting with a nine-member Russian delegation led by Director of Federal Security Service (FSB) of the Russian Federation Alexander Bortnikov here.

“The two sides also acknowledged that there may be some ‘unfriendly forces’ or ‘unfriendly actors’ who may be trying to create hindrances in the bilateral relationship but such adverse campaigns are incapable of affecting the deep understanding bolstered by regular dialogues and mutual cooperation,” an official statement said.

Singh informed the visiting delegation that India and Russia are all-weather friends and enjoy family-like relations and bilateral ties had withstood all trying times in the midst of changing nature of international and political relations.

During the course of the delegation-level meeting lasting for about 45 minutes, the Home Minister highlighted the sponsoring of terrorism by India’s neighbouring country, “which is a threat not only to India and international community but to humanity as a whole”.

Singh said India has a policy of zero-tolerance for terrorism.

The Home Minister said Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Russian President Vladimir Putin have been meeting on different occasions to share and strengthen bilateral cooperation at the highest level.

He also mentioned that the Russian President is loved and respected by all Indians.

Singh said inter-agency cooperation between the two countries should cover bilateral, regional and international issues.

He emphasised that bilateral cooperation should include the areas of military and technical cooperation, energy, economic security and disaster management, and urged that the strategic collaboration between the two countries needs to be strengthened further.

The Home Minister said during the ensuing visit of an Indian delegation to Russia, he would make it a point to visit facilities such as the EMERCOM headquarters to explore areas of technical cooperation between the two countries.

The Russian delegation extended an invitation to the Home Minister to participate in the XVI international meeting of the Heads of Special Services, Security Agencies and Law Enforcement Organisations in Russia later this year, which he accepted.

The Russian team included representatives from FSB’s Departments of Constitution Protection and Counter Terrorism, Intelligence Analysis and International Liaison and Scientific & Technical.

The Indian side included Union Home Secretary Rajiv Mehrishi and senior officers from the Ministry of Home Affairs and Ministry of External Affairs.

By: ET

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