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US Asked Manmohan Singh Not To Encourage Ex Japan PM Shinzo Abe on Quad: Ex Diplomat Shyam Saran

The Quad is a diplomatic partnership between four countries: Australia, India, Japan, and the United States (File)

Jaipur:

Former foreign minister Shyam Saran persuaded India about forming Quad alliance, US urged then-Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to ask Japan’s prime minister not to ‘encourage’ diplomatic alliance focused on Indo-Pacific region He said he was hoping to do so.

Speaking at the 17th Jaipur Literature Festival (JLF) here on Saturday, Saran explained and asserted his position on the Quad, saying the US needs to take China on its side in the issue of Iran and North Korea’s nuclear program. said. “Neither the Chinese nor the Russians were very happy with the Quad.”

The Quad, a diplomatic partnership between Australia, India, Japan and the United States, has been put into cold storage following Chinese protests. It was revived in 2017 after a 10-year hiatus in response to China’s growing assertiveness in world affairs.

“What happened is that before our Prime Minister, Dr. Manmohan Singh, came to Tokyo for an official visit, he was contacted by an American friend who said, ‘I would like to ask Prime Minister Abe (Japan’s Prime Minister at the time) to ask him about the Quad. Please tell the prime minister not to encourage this.” “We want to promote this. This is not the time for us to do this,” Saran said.

Saran, who served as foreign minister from 2004 to 2006, was speaking at a session titled “The Heart of the Matter: The Quad and a New Indo-Pacific Vision” held at the JLF on Saturday.

Surprised by the U.S. attitude, Saran said he asked U.S. officials two questions. “‘Japan is your ally. Why don’t you try talking to Japan yourself?'” And, “You were the ones who convinced us that this was a great platform, so why are you leaving now?”

According to Saran, a U.S. official said, “‘We need China today because we have the Iran nuclear issue in the Security Council. There are also six-party talks on North Korea that we’re trying to revive…We’re not stepping on the ground. I’ll come back, but please wait for a while.” In response, Saran said, “That was your initiative. I don’t think it’s convenient at the moment, so that’s fine.” He said he answered. The Quad’s origins lie in the devastating 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami, when four countries formed the Tsunami Core Group to coordinate emergency response and humanitarian assistance.

Efforts were then made to institutionalize this into the Quad Alliance, led by the late Shinzo Abe during his first term as Japan’s Prime Minister in 2006-2007.

Eric Garcetti, the U.S. ambassador to India who was one of the panelists discussing the topic, did not directly respond to Saran’s remarks, but for Saran, it is more about “the present and the history we are writing” than what happened in the past. said it was more important.

“The first time my president engaged with all countries and all institutions, bilaterally, trilaterally, and quadrilaterally, was at the Quad in Washington, D.C., with the leaders of the three countries (India, Japan, and Australia). “It’s a very powerful reorientation for us. That’s why history is interesting to me, but not so interesting to me…The history we’re writing is not only fascinating; , it’s profound,” he added.

There is no doubt that China is the “cement” that holds the Quad alliance together, Saran said, adding that the Chinese government, which initially called the Quad “fluff on the waves of the ocean,” will now consider the Quad as an alliance. He added that he would not call them the same. Today’s group has acquired “substance”.

“Perhaps it’s not against China, but it’s becoming more clear as a result of the shared recognition among all partners that the balance of power in the region we call the Indo-Pacific is shifting against us. So if we don’t work together, this balance will deteriorate,” said the 78-year-old career diplomat.

(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)

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