Thursday, September 27, 2001, Chandigarh, India


M A I N   N E W S

CCS reviews J&K security situation

New Delhi, September 26
The Cabinet Committee on Security (CCS) tonight held an in-depth review of the security situation in Jammu and Kashmir and developments in Afghanistan and neighbouring countries following the terrorist strikes in the USA.

“I do not want to spread an alarm but can assure you on behalf of the government that preparations have been made after considering all aspects of the situation and various possibilities,” Defence and External Affairs Minister Jaswant Singh said when asked if the government had taken note of the new threats from biological weapons.

Speaking to reporters after a 90-minute meeting of the CCS, he said the committee reviewed the political and other developments relating to the security situation “in Afghanistan, the neighbouring countries and the Jammu and Kashmir.”

He said the state governments were also gearing up to meet any eventuality. The meeting, chaired by Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee, was attended among others by Home Minister L.K. Advani, Finance Minister Yashwant Sinha, Deputy Chairman of Planning Commission K.C. Pant, service chiefs and top officials. PTI


India steps up diplomatic initiative

New Delhi, September 26
As part of India’s stepped up diplomatic initiative and coalition-building exercise against global terrorism, External Affairs and Defence Minister Jaswant Singh will embark on a week-long visit to the USA, France and Germany tomorrow.

Mr Jaswant Singh will fly to Paris from where he will go to New York and Washington on October 2, an External Affairs Ministry spokesperson said here today.

In the USA, the minister is expected to meet his counterparts, Secretary of State Colin Powell and Defence Minister Donald Rumsfeld and other state department officials. He will leave for Germany on October 2 evening.

Mr Jaswant Singh is also expected to visit China sometime later. The dates for the China visit are not confirmed yet.

The visit to the USA takes place even as National Security Advisor and Prime Minister’s Principal Secretary Brajesh Mishra is in washington to confer with the state department officials about building up a concerted stand against global terrorism. UNI



No action on oil prices, says OPEC

Vienna, September 26
OPEC producers prepared today to leave oil supplies unchanged at the expense of their own budgets rather than take any blame for helping tip the world into recession.

Influential Saudi Oil Minister Ali al-Naimi said the cartel will allow time for existing output curbs to be felt in a world oil market where crude prices have slumped under the threat of an impending economic downturn.

“Let’s not take drastic action, OPEC should not rush into decisions,” Naimi told reporters before today’s meeting. “We must hold steady and watch this for a while.”

Ministers say they are resigned to leaving production quotas unchanged at 23.2 million barrels a day. They are expected to call another meeting for November. ReutersBack

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