Cross-border terror backed by official agencies: India

Friday, January 7, 2011

NEW DELHI - Ahead of Pakistan Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi’s expected visit this year, India Friday said it has been a victim of cross-border terror backed by official agencies and reminded Islamabad about bringing the perpetrators of 26/11 strike to justice.

“We have been victims of the most vicious kind of cross-border terror for well over two decades. It has had the backing of official agencies, and continues to be used against us as a political and economic weapon, External Affairs Minister S.M. Krishna told reporters here.

Ahead of a likely visit of Qureshi in the first quarter of 2011, Krishna underlined India’s willingness to take the dialogue process with Pakistan forward, but made it clear that New Delhi expected Islamabad to fulfill its repeated anti-terror assurances.

“India seeks cordial, cooperative and friendly ties with all its neighbours and would remain steadfast in this pursuit, Krishna said while outlining key priorities of India’s foreign policy in the year ahead.

“With Pakistan, as the prime minister has repeatedly said, we stand ready to resolve all outstanding issues through a peaceful dialogue, he said.

“We expect Pakistan to fulfill its repeated assurances given to us at the highest level to not allow the territory under its control for fomenting terrorism aimed against us, and to bring the perpetrators of the Mumbai terrorist attack to justice expeditiously.

“I have extended an invitation to my counterpart to visit India and earnestly hope that we can take the process of dialogue forward, added Krishna.

Krishna and Qureshi held wide-ranging talks in Islamabad July 15 last year, but the effort failed to revive the dialogue process and ended in bitter mutual recrimination.

Pakistan accused India of making the dialogue terror-centric while India contended that Islamabad’s insistence on a deadline for resolving complex issues like Jammu and Kashmir led to the failure of foreign-minister level talks.

Krishna indicated that there would be renewed initiative this year to defreeze the dialogue process. There is no alternative to engaging Pakistan. We will like to engage Pakistan in a dialogue. There is no alternative to dialogue for resolving outstanding issues.”

India’s Permanent Representative to the UN Hardeep Singh Puri was Thursday elected chairperson of the Security Council Counter-Terrorism Committee (CTC), established in 2001.

India will work to further strengthen the international legal framework for counter-terrorism and increase international cooperation in the area by all the UN member-states, Krishna said.

Filed under: Diplomacy

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