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US Blocks $3-Billion Drone Sale to India Until ‘Meaningful Investigation’ of Pannun Assassination Conspiracy? Fact-Check 

A news article in “The Wire” falsely claimed that the US is blocking a $3 billion drone sale to India until there is a’meaningful investigation’ of the Pannun assassination conspiracy. This article by Ajai Shukla is simply propaganda.

The Wire published an article, which was being written by Ajai Shukla on this incident on Jan 31, 2024, with the headline “US Blocks $3-Billion Drone Sale to India Until ‘Meaningful Investigation’ of Pannun Assassination Conspiracy”, contributing to the spread of the false information to many more users on the Internet.

Afterwards, Ajay Shukla (“@ajaishukla“) tweeted “US blocks $3-billion drone sale to India until there is a ‘meaningful investigation’ of the Pannun assassination conspiracy. The proposed purchase includes 15 Sea Guardian drones for the Indian Navy, and 8 Sky Guardians each for the air force and army.” on Jan 31, 2024. The tweet has received an about 92.6k views on X.

Further, again @ajaishukla made a tweet regarding this, claiming that 31 MQ-9A Sea Guardian and Sky Guardian drones were scheduled to be delivered to India, but the US government has stopped them from doing so until New Delhi conducts a “meaningful investigation” into the conspiracy to assassinate Gurpatwant Singh Pannun on Jan 31, 2024.

The News site The Wire (“@thewire_in“) also started tweetig the the pictures and also claimed that the US Blocks $3-Billion Drone Sale to India Until ‘Meaningful Investigation’ of Pannun Assassination Conspiracy on Jan 31, 2024.

Several other accounts, including Derek J. Grossman (“@DerekJGrossman“), Siddharth (“@svaradarajan“), Maj Gen K Khorana (“@gen_khorana“), Pravin Sawhney (“@PravinSawhney“), Dr. Ayesha Ray (“@DrAyeshaRay“), Jayant Bhandari (“@JayantBhandari5“), SAMAA TV (“@SAMAATV“), @AudreyTruschke, Conflict Watch PSF (“@AmRaadPSF“), @rwac48 also made the same claim that US blocks $3-Billion drone sale to India until ‘Meaningful Investigation’ of Pannun Assassination Conspiracy. The archive can be read from above.

What is the Actual Truth Behind this Incident? : Fact

The US State Department’s Matthew Miller, a spokesman, emphasised the significance of the agreement in advancing strategic collaboration with India and highlighted the routine consultations  with Congress members on foreign affair committees. Later, the US State Department approved a possible Foreign Military Sale to India of MQ-9B Remotely Piloted Aircraft and related equipment. Baesd on the fake news spread, the questions were being asked to Matthew Miller by Pakistani origin Journalist Jahanzaib Ali, Washington Correspondent of ARY Digital Network.

Defense Security Cooperation Agency clarified this in an official document where they clearly mentioned “The State Department has made a determination approving a possible Foreign Military Sale to the Government of India of MQ-9B Remotely Piloted Aircraft and related equipment for an estimated cost of $3.99 billion. The Defense Security Cooperation Agency delivered the required certification notifying Congress of this possible sale today.”

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D-Intent’s Fact-Checking Results:

Intent:

Anti-India portal spreading false news regarding India’s foreign policy to hurt India’s global image. An article published in “The Wire” stated, untruthfully, that the US is blocking a $3 billion worth of drone sale to India until a “meaningful investigation” into the Pannun assassination conspiracy is completed. Ajai Shukla’s article is nothing more than misinformation. After proper research, analysis and fact-checking, we have discovered that the US State Department spokesperson Matthew Miller emphasised the significance of the deal in advancing strategic collaboration with India and emphasised the regular consultations with Congressmen on foreign affairs committees. Afterwards, the MQ-9B remotely piloted aircraft and associated equipment is being approved by the U.S. State Department for  a possible Foreign Military Sale to the Government of India.

Conclusion:

Fact : Matthew Miller, a US State Department spokesperson, emphasised the importance of the deal in furthering strategic cooperation with India, emphasising routine consultations with members of Congress’s foreign affairs committees. Later, the US State Department approved a possible Foreign Military Sale to India of MQ-9B Remotely Piloted Aircraft and related equipment.

Also Read : Bahraich, Uttar Pradesh— Sick Woman Beaten Up And Thrown Out By The Hospital Staff Due To Shortage Of Money? Fact-Check 

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