Academic journal article Indian Foreign Affairs Journal

External Interventions and Internal Instability in West Asia: Implications for India

Academic journal article Indian Foreign Affairs Journal

External Interventions and Internal Instability in West Asia: Implications for India

Article excerpt

West Asia, including the Persian Gulf region, is presently undergoing extraordinary upheaval. Civil wars in Syria and Yemen; foreign interventions, especially by the US and some NATO members in supporting elements opposed to the present Syrian regime; the advent of 'Daesh', recent dramatic entry of Russia into the Syrian scene as well as the spat between Russia and Turkey; reported internal squabbles within some Gulf States; mass exodus of refugees; regional rivalries, such as between Saudi Arabia and Iran; fallouts of the recent accords between Iran and the P5+1, the on-going Israel-Palestine issues; dwindling oil revenues; etc. have further deepened the precarious situation and have led to heightened anxieties around the world.

India, that has had intricate relations with West Asia in general and the Persian Gulf, in particular, is naturally affected. India's historical links with this region have been strengthened over the past decades by the presence of huge number of Indian workers - one of the largest expatriate communities. India views the region as an extension of its immediate neighbourhood. As of date, over 7 million Indians live and work in just the six member countries of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) - collectively remitting over $30 billion annually.

Trade between West Asia and India stood at around $191 billion for the financial year 2013-14, which accounted for 25 per cent of India's global trade. …

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