Russia won’t use nuclear weapon in Ukraine: Russian envoy Alipov

The Russian envoy also said that Russia will closely examine any diplomatic solution that India offers to end the Ukraine conflict

CHENNAI | Updated: 06 February, 2023 6:41 pm IST
Russian ambassador to India Denis Alipov

Amid concerns about the Russia-Ukraine conflict turning nuclear, the Russian envoy to India, Denis Alipov, assured that his nation won’t use nuclear weapons in Ukraine unless the Kremlin is cornered in a dangerous situation.

Ambassador Alipov’s comments came during a one-day forum, ‘Next Steps in India-Russia Strategic Partnership; Old Friends New Horizons’, convened by the India Writes Network in association with the Centre for Global India Insights on India-Russia ties in New Delhi.

Responding to a public query on the possible use of nuclear weapons, Ambassador Alipov remarked, “God forbid! This is unimaginable. Don’t forget that the nuclear issue was first raised by the British in the context of the Ukraine conflict. They said that we were going to use, and Britain possibly would use, the nuclear option in the context of the Ukrainian conflict.”

In a reference to solving the full-scale armed conflict in Ukraine, the envoy stated that Russia is open to serious talks to end the armed conflict in Ukraine diplomatically. “However, not a single country has made a serious proposal or provided a tangible solution that meets Russian interests. If New Delhi makes any diplomatic proposal to end the war in Ukraine, the Kremlin will examine Delhi’s proposals seriously,” Alipov said.

Alipov also urged New Delhi to “normalise” its frosty relations with Beijing, especially when their relations are on tenterhooks.

Speaking on Moscow’s growing engagement with Islamabad, despite Pakistan’s arms shipment to Ukraine, Ambassador Denis Alipov said, “Russia won’t do anything with Pakistan that is detrimental to India.”

Terming Russia’s defence pacts with Pakistan as “very limited” in the area of counterterror, the Russian envoy said, “A weak Pakistan won’t be better for India and Afghanistan.”

Taking a jibe at Washington, about Russia’s growing cooperation with India in the domain of technologies, Alipov said, “Russia doesn’t mix the transfer of technology with politics.”

According to the envoy, Russia’s export volume to India has increased by 7 to 9 times in recent times, despite stiff western sanctions on Russia.

Meanwhile, Ivan Nosov, CEO of SberBank India, Russia’s banking major, said that Russia and India have resolved the logistics and payment-related issues to make the business environment more conducive and immune to western sanctions.

Sharing her personal experiences from age-old personal ties with Russia, India’s former Ambassador to Switzerland, Smita Purushottam, underscored Russia’s cultural ties with India and the rest of the world.

Purushottam expressed her dissatisfaction over the lack of English translations of legendary Russian literary figures like Mikhail Bulgakov in public culture. She further suggested the forum initiate a free, accessible and positive impact-making alternative of OTT giant Netflix to showcase Russian literature and culture.

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