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China's strategic rivalry poses challenges: Antony

April 24, 2012 16:34 IST

The strategic and security implications from Af-Pak region, China's strategic rivalry and domestic and trans-national terrorism were the challenges outlined by Defence Minister A K Antony on Tuesday who said these cannot be felt in the same measure by other countries.

Addressing the top commanders of all the three services, Antony also asked them to put in place Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) to counter cyber security threats.

Asking the commanders to keep a close watch on the situation in Afghanistan-Pakistan region, Antony said, "Any development in the Af-Pak region will have strategic and security implications for India. We need to keep a close watch on the situation in the region".

He added that the latest events in the Af-Pak region clearly show that it cannot be presumed that the issues there are nearing any solution.

Highlighting that "China's rise as an economic and military power and its assertive policies," have implications for India, Antony said, "China's strategic rivalry with India and Japan would definitely affect the Asian security environment".

"All these developments pose challenges to all the wings of the defence forces. In the Indian context, these challenges cannot be felt in the same measures by other countries", he said.

Noting that security situation in North East and Jammu and Kashmir has improved to some extent, the Defence Minister cautioned the forces that the coming months of summer will prove to be a real test for them.

"We have to remain vigilant and active and can not afford to drop our guard," Antony said.

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