M A I N   N E W S

India says no to trilateral security pact with US, Oz
Ajay Banerjee/TNS

New Delhi, December 1
India has rejected the efforts of Australia that suggested a three-nation economic and security pact among itself, India and USA. Australia had even claimed that India was ‘positive’ about it. Today, New Delhi rejected all theories originating from Canberra.

The Ministry of Defence has conveyed in strong words to the top establishment that it was not keen to “hop on to any multi-lateral security tie-up in the region except those under the UN flag”.

This is in line with India’s policy that it will not have a security grouping, but would opt for a one-to-one relationship with Australia. India has such defence relationships with Russia, the US, Japan, the UK, Germany and South Korea to name a few.

New Delhi does not want to be seen as part of any military arrangement to counter ‘anybody’, a source explained adding that “we do not want to be perceived as part of an alliance”.

The word ‘anybody’ is clearly aimed to quantify China which had recently warned Australia against having a military tie-up with the US. Two weeks ago, the US unveiled plans to station 2,500 of its troops in the northern territories of Australia. China reacted sharply telling Australia that it might be “caught in the crossfire” if the US uses its Australia-based military forces to threaten China’s interests.

Sources said the Ministry of Defence was taken aback at the statement made by Australian Foreign Minister Kevin Rudd that suggested that India would be roped in to having a trilateral security pact.

The Ministry of External Affairs spokesperson, while referring to Rudd’s remarks in the media, reacted sharply this evening saying “We are not aware of any such proposal”.

The snub comes just three days after Rudd said that sale of uranium to India (for its nuclear power plants) “would not start automatically" after the reversal of a ban against its export announced by Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard.

On the suggested tri-nation pact, Rudd was quoted in the media as having said in an interview with the Australian Financial Review newspaper that “the response from the Indian Government has really been quite positive.”

Sources said India would be open to forums like the ASEAN Regional Forum or the ASEAN Defence Ministers Meeting which already has eight special invitees - India, Australia, the US, Japan, China, South Korea, New Zealand and Russia.

What it means

India not to join any multinational tie-up except those under the UN flag

Doesn’t want to be perceived as part of any military alliance to counter anybody

Open to one-to-one relationships with other nations


The response from the Indian Government has really been quite positive.

— Kevin Rudd,  Australian Foreign Minister

MEA snub

We are not aware of any such proposal.





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