Five Reasons Why India Could Mediate A Russian-Ukrainian Ceasefire
India should begin talks with Russia and the US about this right away because time is of the essence as other players vie for the chance to go down in history for helping end the most geostrategically significant conflict since World War II.
There’s a growing consensus that the failure of Kiev’s NATO-backed counteroffensive and Moscow’s edge over NATO in their “race of logistics”/”war of attrition” will result in the resumption of Russian-Ukrainian talks in some form by the end of the year as was explained here. This will at the very least be aimed at reaching a ceasefire, but Zelensky is prohibited by the Rada from conducting talks with Russia, ergo the need for a mediator. Here are five reasons why India could play this role:
1. The US Wants To “De-Sinify” The Peace Process
China has the diplomatic power to implement its plan for freezing the NATO-Russian proxy war, but only if the US allows Kiev to participate in talks under its aegis, which is unlikely to be approved. There’s no way that Washington would let its systemic rival go down in history as the country that helped end the most geostrategically significant conflict since World War II, with it instead preferring to “de-Sinify” the peace process by having someone else play this role in order to deprive Beijing of that diplomatic victory.
2. Russia Might Not Trust Turkiye To Mediate Again
Turkish President Erdogan’s violation of the Azovstal deal that he reached last year with his Russian counterpart might have irreparably damaged trust between them to the point where President Putin no longer feels comfortable with Turkiye mediating between it and Kiev ever again. In that case and considering the seeming inevitability of talks resuming in some form by year’s end, then it therefore follows that Russia, Ukraine, and the US would have to agree on someone else to mediate in its place.
3. India Is Much More Appealing Than South Africa
Apart from South Africa, India is the only major country that’s consistently abstained from all anti-Russian UNGA Resolutions, thus proving its neutrality towards the NATO-Russian proxy war in Ukraine. Unlike Pretoria, however, Delhi isn’t a party to the ICC and its ties with Moscow are no longer criticized by Washington. These two factors combine to make India much more appealing than South Africa as Turkiye’s possible replacement for mediating between Russia and US-controlled Ukraine.
4. Russia & The US Have Excellent Relations With India
The decades-long Russian-Indian Strategic Partnership has impressively weathered unprecedented Western pressure upon it over the last sixteen and a half months while the Indian-US Strategic Partnership was recently strengthened without doing so at the expense of Moscow’s interests. Each of those two Great Powers have natural interests in further elevating India’s rapidly rising role in global affairs, hence why they could prospectively agree on having it mediate Russian-Ukrainian ceasefire talks.
5. The Optics Of Indian Mediation Are Acceptable To All
Russia and the US are competing for hearts and minds across the Global South so each would gain from the optics of them requesting the “Voice of the Global South” to mediate. Both would also receive supplementary benefits by doing so too: Russia wouldn’t have to worry about whatever compromises it might make being spun for divide-and-rule purposes as “Chinese-dictated”, while the US can present India’s prestigious diplomatic role as proof that the “Asian Century” doesn’t mean a “Chinese Century”.
State Department spokesman Matt Miller confirmed on Monday that “we welcome a role that India or any other country could play” in stopping this conflict, which signaled that it could replace Turkiye if Russia no longer regards the latter as a trusted mediator. Should Delhi be interested, then it should begin talks with both about this right away because time is of the essence as other players vie for the chance to go down in history for helping end the most geostrategically significant conflict since World War II.