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No double standards on terrorism: Rice
Aziz Haniffa in Washington D C |
May 15, 2003 10:14 IST
The Bush administration does not have double standards in fighting terrorism, US National Security Adviser Condoleezza Rice has asserted.
Making her first appearance at the Foreign Press Centre on Wednesday, Rice declared, "The President (George W Bush) is very firm in his commitment that terrorism, wherever it is carried out, against whom it is carried out, is not a legitimate means for advancing a political agenda."
Earlier this week, Rice had met her Indian counterpart Brajesh Mishra for over an hour and also facilitated the latter to have a 'substantive' 20 minute meeting with Bush.
"All terrorism is wrong," she emphasised trying to counter criticism that her government considers only attacks directed against the US as terrorism. "In fact, we have had very good cooperation with the Indian government in the war on terrorism."
Rice also recalled that her government had spoken out 'strongly' against terrorism when the Indian Parliament was attacked on December 13, 2001.
"The US also has listed a number of organisations that have been involved in terrorism in India, including Kashmiri-based organisations that have been involved in terrorism," she said. "We will continue to speak out about terrorism wherever it might occur."
Emphasising that US ties with India were 'broad and deepening', Rice said, "It (the relationship) goes beyond security matters, proliferation and regional issues."
Rice also described India as a stabilising force in South Asia citing an example of the role India could play. "We have had good cooperation and consultations on Afghanistan, for instance, and we intend to have this very good relationship."
She also lauded Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee's recent extension of an olive branch to Pakistan.
"We have had discussions about that (peace process) and we stand ready to help in any way that we can as the two parties try to re-enter dialogue," she said.