After passing resolutions condeming the invasion of Iraq by the Coalition forces, India is now cozying up to the Interim Govt. Iraq’s foreign minister Hoshiyar Zebari is to visit India this month.
As a first step, India has offered to train 30 Iraqi electoral officials in India, but the government is clearly ready to go beyond making contributions in procedures and arrangements. The elections, the government feels, are a useful instrument for India tossing its hat into the Iraq ring yet again.
With a declared “hands-off” policy on Iraq surviving the NDA government, India has found itself increasingly marginalised in the global stakes in Iraq and clearly missing out on the action. The bedrock of India’s shift comes from the realisation that Iraq’s stability is in India’s interest which is reaching out to West Asia in a new way. From energy to strategic stability in the Islamic world, India wants a more hands-on role. [India to ‘unshackle’ Iraq policy]
The reality is that Saddam Hussein is not going to come back to power and Iraq has the second largest oil reserves. With so much oil consumption in India, it is better we get friendly with the Iraqi administration.