Friday, Aug 29, 2003
Front Page |
Southern States |
Other States |
Advts: Classifieds | Employment | Obituary |
India & World
By P. S. Suryanarayana
Mr. Downer hailed the MoU as ``an agreement to join forces in the battle against regional and global terrorism''. Noting that the accord ``will forge closer cooperation between.... (the) security, intelligence and law enforcement agencies'' of the two countries, Mr. Downer said the anti-terror cooperation was ``the focus of the third round of the Australia-India Foreign Ministers' framework dialogue'' that was held earlier in the day. The other subjects discussed ranged from the proliferation of the weapons of mass destruction to North Korea, Iraq as also the situation in South and South East Asia.
Emphasising that the Australia-India ``strategic convergence'' was also ``matched (now) by an expanding commercial partnership'', Mr. Downer drew attention to Canberra's ``capacity and willingness to support New Delhi's economic expansion''. With this MoU, Australia sought to diversify its strategic engagement of key countries.
Mr. Sinha, responding to questions from The Hindu in Singapore ahead of today's event in Adelaide, said that ``the MoU provides for establishment of a Joint Working Group on Counter-Terrorism''.
This would ``enable policy-level dialogue at regular intervals (and) it will also strengthen ongoing cooperation at the technical level between law-enforcement agencies of the two countries''.
Noting that it was Australia that took the initiative for this MoU, Mr. Sinha said this ``reflects their readiness to engage with us on an issue that has become the biggest security challenge of our times''. It was, therefore, ``a good beginning''.
Without wishing to be drawn directly into commenting on the latest Australian proposal that India, among a few others, could be made a permanent member of the U.N. Security Council but without the veto power, Mr. Sinha identified the ``several new initiatives'' on the bilateral front such as the framework dialogue itself and the upgradation of the strategic dialogue. ``Australia is playing an increasingly important role in the Asia Pacific (region). It is a country with which we enjoy (an) increasing convergence of interests, particularly on security issues beginning with counter-terrorism.
Moreover, given the size of the Australian economy and as our own economy attains greater dynamism and integration with the Pacific region, with our recent status as Dialogue Partner of the Pacific Islands Forum, there are prospects for further enhancement in our trade and economic relations,'' he said.
'Proof against Pak.'
PTI reports from Adelaide:
Australia today said there was ``irrefutable'' proof that Pakistan was a source of terrorism and there had been support for terrorist outfits in the country for many years.
``Pakistan has been one of the sources of terrorism and Taliban really developed out of Pakistan during the Soviet occupation of Afghanistan,'' Mr. Downer told PTI when asked about Mr. Sinha's remarks in an Australian newspaper that `Pakistan is an epicentre of world terrorism'.
The Hindu Group: Home | About Us | Copyright | Archives | Contacts | Subscription
Group Sites: The Hindu | Business Line | The Sportstar | Frontline | The Hindu eBooks | Home |
Copyright © 2003, The
Hindu. Republication or redissemination of the contents of
this screen are expressly prohibited without the written consent of