Pakistan’s Prime Minister Imran Khan and Russian President Vladimir Putin are expected to meet in China in a month. The heads of the two states will visit China in February to support the Beijing Winter Olympics held in China. Meanwhile, separate discussions can also take place between President Putin and P.M Khan. During the Biden administration, the United States and numerous other Western countries, including Australia and the United Kingdom, have diplomatically boycotted the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics. It is not a new move-in international politics. Some European countries also boycotted the 2019 FIFA World Cup in Russia. In this case, Islamabad and Moscow will try to maintain solidarity with China. Even so, Delhi’s concern might increase because of the expanding ties of Pakistan with Russia and China.
The upcoming Beijing Winter Olympics can be considered as a demonstration of strength for the President of China Xi Jinping. Officially it is the 24th Olympics, a multi-sport event in which about 2,900 athletes are taking part and will be held in the first week of February in different parts of the capital of China. This meeting and the bilateral talks can impact the peace and stability of the whole Asian region. The Foreign Minister of Russia, Mr. Sergei Lavrov visited Pakistan last year and guaranteed to provide arms. Similarly, in the past four months Imran Khan and Vladimir Putin had phone call conversations thrice and both the leaders are on the same page regarding Islamophobia.
Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan will travel to Beijing to seek additional assets from China for projects related to the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor. He can turn into the first such leader in the world, who will arrive in China after the pandemic starts. Pakistan has guaranteed that they have been invited by President of China Xi Jinping. In fact, incensed by the continuous political unsteadiness in Pakistan and assaults on Chinese residents working in CPEC, China has quit funding developmental projects.
Pakistan in quest of expanding Military Corporation with Russia. After seeing the collapse of the situation in Afghanistan and the geopolitical situation in Asia, Russia and Pakistan are getting closer. Last year, in the month of September, the Deputy Defence Minister of Russia. General Alexander V Fomin held discussions with the Pakistani authorities to improve two-sided military ties. Since then, Pakistan’s Prime Minister Imran Khan has addressed Russian President Vladimir Putin multiple times. In September, the Pakistani Army likewise led a joint exercise named Druzhba-2021 with the Russian Army.
A few months ago, an agreement was signed between Pakistan and Russia to lay a pipeline from Russia’s Kasur city to Pakistan’s Karachi city for supplying gas and oil. If this pipeline is laid, then the supply of oil and gas to Pakistan will start directly from Russia. This can reduce the dependence of Pakistan on the Gulf nations for energy needs.
Pakistan and Russia to initiate a mutual exchange of intelligence including bilateral joint military exercises
An exchange of views over regional security matters. Pakistan and Russian cooperation over intelligence sharing would raise serious concerns for New Delhi. Pakistan would be conducting joint bilateral military exercises which would allow Pakistan to learn about Russian weapon technology which is in extensive Indian use. As a matter of fact, Pakistan is threatened by Indian misadventures; in such perilous, aligning with Russia
Would prove beneficial for Pakistan’s security.
Pakistan’s increasing proximity is a threat to Russia-India-China (RIC) strategic triangle. The RIC is trilateral cooperation including trade of perspectives on different local and worldwide issues of significance between Russia, China and India. The uprising tensions in India’s engagement within this arrangement and its other alignments, the relations of India and China are at the lowest point. At the same time, the increasing proximity of Russia to China and Pakistan can be considered as an emerging threat for India to get sidelined in “RIC”. The current situations are a serious matter of concern for India to not get replaced by Pakistan.
Geopolitical realities are changing in Asia, tensions are stirred between allies and new alignments are ready to appear. The Chinese held Olympics 2022, taking place in the capital, will be the starting point of the new alignments in Asia. Since Pakistan is moving closer to Russia, which was evident in the pipeline agreements, mutual exchange of intelligence and views on regional security and commitments of provision of arms by Russia to Pakistan. These events might place Pakistan in the good books of Russia; thus an opportunity to counter Indian belligerence. The Olympic Games would provide Pakistan with renewed opportunities for commitments with China over CPEC and the establishment of new alliances. The future would further depend on Pakistan’s conduct of foreign policy regarding China and Russia, especially over the CPEC and pipeline agreement.