Reuters / Duvar English
India has not cut imports of oil and steel products from Turkey, nor was it contemplating any curbs, India’s Commerce Minister Piyush Goyal said Jan. 16, conflicting prior reports from government officials.
“India believes in free play and equal treatment for all,” Goyal said at a security conference in New Delhi, adding that the government also was not contemplating any restrictions on the two countries.
Earlier in the week, government officials had reported that India is planning to cut some imports from Turkey and Malaysia, targeting the two Muslim-majority countries for their criticism of New Delhi’s policy towards Kashmir.
“Our government has not taken kindly the comments of Malaysia and Turkey and we will restrict trade from both the countries,” one of the officials had said.
Kashmir, claimed entirely by India but ruled with Pakistan, lost its autonomy last year in an attempt by India to take control of the region. Internet access was cut and activists and politicians are detained often in the region.
President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan said that the people of Kashmir were “virtually under blockade.”
Ankara often sides with Pakistan on issues like importing goods that can be used to manufacture nuclear weapons and its blacklisting by international financial watchdog Financial Action Task Force, something India has long lobbied for.