Wednesday, October 3, 2001, Chandigarh, India





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USA calls India key partner
We will wipe out terrorism, Bush tells Jaswant
Vasantha Arora and T.V. Parasuram

Washington, October 2
In a major policy statement, the USA has called India a “key partner” in the proposed global coalition against terrorism, saying “we do believe that terrorism must be ended everywhere.”

The statement made by State Department spokesman Richard Boucher also condemned Monday’s terrorist attack in Kashmir.

External Affairs Minister Jaswant Singh had a 40-minute unscheduled meeting at the White House with President George W. Bush. The American leader assured him that the US fight against global terrorism was not unidimensional. It also covered India in wiping out the scourge.

This was stated by Mr Jaswant Singh after his talks with Mr Bush and a 75-minute meeting with National Security Adviser Condoleezza Rice yesterday, hours after militants set off a car bomb blast outside the Jammu and Kashmir National Assembly that left 38 dead and over 60 injured.

Mr Bush dropped in unannounced when Mr Jaswant Singh was holding talks with Rice at the White House.

Mr Singh said Mr Bush was very categorical that the fight against terrorism was simply not unidimensional and that it was against terrorism in all its manifestations.

The focus of the US fight is just now against Osama bin Laden’s al-Qaeda network which operates under one name at one place and under another name at another place. But the fight will not end until it is dealt with everywhere in the globe, he said.

This was the second time Mr Bush had come by during Mr Singh’s talks with Rice. Earlier this year, the US President had dropped in while Mr Singh was holding discussions with Rice.

Mr Singh told the American leaders that the global fight against terrorism cannot be unidirectional and has to address various manifestations of terrorism.

“My understanding (as a result of the talks) is that the fight against terrorism is focussed in an organised way on a number of terrorist organisations,” Mr Singh said describing his discussions with the two leaders “as very candid, very productive.” “We exchanged views with regard to the totality of the situation and the President reiterated the US resolve to fight terrorism worldwide,” he said.

He said Mr Bush and Rice expressed their desire that India keep in constant touch with the USA so that the two countries continued to interact in this very difficult situation which has challenged the entire civilised world.

Terming Pakistan “as much terrorist as the Taliban,” Mr Singh said “Taliban is the product of the machinery of Pakistan. It continues to aid it, finance it and equip it.” IANS, PTIBack

 

PM writes to Bush

Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee, in a brief letter to US President George W. Bush shortly after yesterday’s car bomb attack near the Jammu and Kashmir legislative Assembly, has said Pakistan must understand that there was “a limit” to the patience of the Indians.

“Incidents of this kind (yesterday’s car bomb attack in Srinagar) raise questions for our security which, as a democratically elected leader of India, I have to address in our supreme national interest. Pakistan must understand that there is a limit to the patience of the people of India,” Mr Vajpayee said in his letter to Mr Bush.

Mr Vajpayee told Mr Bush in his letter that yesterday’s car bombing “comes only a day after the President of Pakistan announced on television that Pakistan had no terrorist groups operating from its territory.”

Significantly, the Prime Minister reminded Mr Bush that the Pakistan-based terrorist organisation, Jaish-e-Mohammad (JeM), had claimed responsibility for the car bombing. Back

 

UK condemns attack on Assembly

New Delhi, October 2
The British Government today condemned the car bomb attack on the Jammu and Kashmir Assembly, saying such attacks would only serve to stiffen its resolve to work with other governments to tackle terrorism.

Foreign Office Minister Ben Bradshaw said, “This sort of callous attack on a civilian target will only serve to stiffen our resolve against terrorism. “My thoughts are with the victims of the attack and the families,” he added. Jaish-e-Muhammad, which has claimed responsibility for the suicide attack, is prescribed in Britain under the 2000 Terrorist Act. External Affairs Minister Jaswant Singh, who is reaching London tomorrow, will meet British Foreign Minister Jack Straw and Defence Minister Geoff Hoon. PTIBack

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