EXECUTIVE SUMMARY: In a far-reaching development for India’s strategic interests, Russia signed an agreement with Pakistan for naval cooperation on July 31. The agreement comes on the heels of an accord between Moscow and Islamabad in April of this year to increase cooperation in the training of armed forces personnel in the naval field and the conduct of a wide range of joint military exercises.
Russia is building military, diplomatic, and economic ties with Pakistan that could upend historic alliances in the South Asian region.
Ties between India and Russia date back to the Cold War, but relations between Cold War adversaries Russia and Pakistan are now being developed on the basis of a convergence of interests. With Washington suspending or curtailing military aid to Pakistan, collaboration with Moscow is going to be pivotal for Islamabad.
Russia has long been India’s strategic ally, so New Delhi is concerned about Moscow’s developing relationship with Islamabad. It is particularly worried about their ties in the defense realm as most of India’s military equipment is of Russian origin.