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Updated 10:35 AM EDT, Thu, Apr 18, 2019

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Russia Surprises India by Supporting Chinese-Backed CPEC Project: Report

Russia Makes U-turn on CPEC Project.

(Photo : Getty Images) Russia now has made a surprise u-turn on the CPEC project by showing keen interest to become part of the multi-billion dollar project.

Following Russia's recent open denial that it wants to become a part of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), the former Soviet Union giant has now made a u-turn. It is now showing keen interest to link its own mega infrastructure project with CPEC in a bid to reap mutual economic benefits.

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Russia's Eurasian Economic Union (EEU) project is just as ambitious project as the CPEC. It predominately passes through Eurasian countries such as Belarus, Kazakhstan, Ukraine, and Russia.    

Russia's ambassador to Pakistan, Alexey Y Dedov, has been quoted saying that leaders of both countries have held meetings to connect the two mega infrastructure projects.

Dedov reportedly said that Russia "strongly" supports the CPEC project as it offered twofold benefits of Pakistan's economic growth and helping regional connectivity.

According to reports from reliable sources, Russia's overtures towards the CPEC project have left Indian leaders feeling completely restless.     

Russia and Indian Relation on a Downward Spiral     

Once a most loyal friend, now Russia is getting increasingly estranged with India over its increasing cosiness with the US and other countries. The strain in bilateral relationship is easily reflected in divergent views held by both countries on several sensitive issues.

The contrasting views on Afghan Taliban and Pakistan's alleged nexus with terrorist organizations certainly rank very high in this list. Russia's new found friendship with Pakistan was openly visible at this year's BRIC Summit.

At the summit, Moscow refused to back India's decision to publicly name Pakistan based terrorist organizations in the official declaration.

The growing chasm between India and Moscow has not escaped the attention of foreign experts.

Strategic affairs expert Brahma Chellaney said "It is as if Moscow no longer sees India as a reliable friend or partner. Indeed, by seeking common cause with India's regional adversaries (Pakistan and China). Russia is challenging India's core interests."

India's Security Concern on CPEC Project

New Delhi has never been comfortable with the Chinese-backed CPEC Project, which aims to connect Gwadar port in Pakistan's restive Balochistan province to Chinese province of Xinjiang. India fears that this mega project would give China a strong foothold in South Asian region, which New Delhi considers as its own backyard.

Besides, Indian leaders are equally apprehensive about CPEC Project passing through the Pakistan Occupied Kashmir (POK). New Delhi claimed that the project's presence in POK posseses a huge security concern for India. 

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