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Abraham Accords and India's Middle East Strategy



  Sep 01, 2023

The Abraham Accords and India's Middle East Strategy


The Abraham Accords, inked in 2020, are landmark agreements that have normalized diplomatic relations between Israel and several Arab nations, including the UAE, Bahrain, Sudan, and Morocco. Backed by the United States, these agreements signal a tectonic shift in Middle East geopolitics. The accords, while primarily focusing on the countries directly involved, have wider implications, including for countries like India that have significant stakes in the region.
 

India's Response to the Abraham Accords

India, with its diplomatic finesse, welcomed the agreements. New Delhi's response reflects its growing strategic interests in West Asia and its evolving relationships with both Israel and the Arab states.
 

How the Accords Impact India:

Enhanced Diplomatic Manoeuvrability: The Abraham Accords paves the way for India to bolster its "Link West" policy. India can now cultivate deeper ties with Israel without the apprehension of alienating its Arab partners, thus expanding its diplomatic horizon in the region.
 
Trade and Economic Interests: A harmonious Middle East offers prospects for increased trade and investment. India has robust economic relations with both the Gulf nations and Israel. The accords could spur new collaborations and ventures, particularly in technology, agriculture, and defense sectors.
 
Strategic and Security Cooperation: India, already engaged in defense deals with Israel, can further amplify security collaborations, considering the newfound Arab-Israeli cooperation. Intelligence sharing concerning counter-terrorism can also be potentially heightened.
 
Balancing Act with Palestine: India has been a vocal supporter of the Palestinian cause. With the Abraham Accords in place, India might find it challenging to maintain its traditional stance and manage its burgeoning ties with Israel and the Arab states. It will be imperative for New Delhi to reassure Palestine of its continued support, even as it deepens ties with other Middle Eastern nations.
 
Alignment with the US Middle East Policy: As India continues to foster its strategic relationship with the US, supporting US-led initiatives such as the Abraham Accords strengthens India's position. This is especially crucial in the context of the Indo-Pacific, where both nations are collaborating to ensure a free and open region.
 
Diaspora and Energy Security: Stability in the Middle East is crucial for India. The region is home to a large Indian diaspora whose remittances play a significant role in India's economy. Additionally, the Gulf nations are vital for India's energy security, supplying a major chunk of its oil and gas needs.
 

In Summary

The Abraham Accords have undeniably reshaped Middle East geopolitics. For India, these agreements provide an avenue to recalibrate its West Asia policy, emphasizing economic partnerships, defense collaborations, and a balanced diplomatic approach. As with any geopolitical development, India will need to tread carefully, ensuring its national interests are safeguarded while respecting the sensitivities of all regional players.


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