An 'Indo' wobble in the Indo-Pacific

New Delhi grows cold to a closer embrace of Washington amid unhappiness with US leadership under Trump.

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It was the autumn of 2010 and Japan's then-Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama, aware of his lame duck situation, sent word to New Delhi that he wasn't keen to fly down for the annual summit that was agreed in their strategic partnership.

Acutely aware of optics in international ties and that any perceived weakening of the Indo-Japan relationship would be duly noted in Beijing, Dr Manmohan Singh, India's leader at the time, asked his national security adviser to travel to Tokyo and persuade Mr Hatoyama to change his mind. The mission succeeded and Mr Hatoyama did go over.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on July 13, 2018, with the headline An 'Indo' wobble in the Indo-Pacific. Subscribe