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No selective apoproach to fighting terror: India to US

Last updated on: September 27, 2011 08:37 IST

India has conveyed to the United States that countries with a "determined position to fight terror" cannot be selective in their approach in dealing with the menace and have to fight the scourge together "across the board".

External Affairs Minister S M Krishna discussed the issue of terror with Secretary of State Hillary Clinton at a bilateral meeting that lasted here for over 40 minutes.

Terming the meeting as "very good and constructive," Krishna later told reporters that the two sides spent time on discussing the issue of terrorism and condemned the recent attacks on the American mission in Kabul and at the High Court in New Delhi.

"I made out the point that it is necessary for all those countries which have taken the determined position to fight terror will have to act together and fight it across the board without being selective in our approach," he said adding that "Secretary Clinton agreed with us."

The talks also featured concerns over the Haqqani network with the External Affairs Minister pointing out that "whenever terror comes up for discussion, the Haqqani group is certainly a factor which is woven into terrorism."

On whether America's recent accusation against Inter-Services Intelligence for supporting the deadly Haqqani network has brought a sense of unity between India and the US on Pakistan, Krishna said "it is not a question of America agreeing with India and India agreeing with Pakistan."

He said the countries have to see what is "our approach, reaction, response to terror.

"If the position US takes on terror is exactly similar to the position India takes that does not mean to say that they have been converted to our position or we have taken position similar to them."

The two sides also followed up on the civil nuclear treaty and discussed what needs to be done further.

Clinton urged Krishna to ensure that India's nuclear liability regime conforms with the Convention on Supplementary Compensation for Nuclear damage, an American official said requesting anonymity.

Krishna and Clinton discussed a host of multilateral issues including the situation in Palestine, Sudan and Syria. When asked to comment on the divergent views that India and the US have on Syria and Palestine, Krishna said as Prime Minister Manmohan Singh has said in his address to the United Nations General Assembly, "We cannot order how nations set their house in order."

On concerns that momentum of the India-US relations appear to be slowing down, with certain defence contracts not being awarded to US companies, Krishna said this is not an issue by which US would be offended.

He said defence contracts are awarded on basis of merit and are a comparative tabulated evaluation done by a committee of experts. "I do not think anybody can take offence if we chose something else. US has been into this long enough not to misjudge the relationship based only on a particular issue. We will have to take the generality," he added.

Krishna said he was "quite satisfied" with the outcome of his talks.

Clinton complimented India on its active participation in the New Silk Road initiative to strengthen transit and trade in South and Central Asia.

"The ministers compared notes on the upcoming New Silk Road conference in Istanbul in early November," the official said.

Image: External Affairs Minister S M Krishna

Photograph: Paresh Gandhi

Yoshita Singh in New York
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