June 6, 2010 2:44:13 am
India’s contributions to the military security of Afghanistan would be defined by the nature of the requests from the government in Kabul and the availability of Indian resources,National Security Advisor Shivshankar Menon told an Asian defence conclave here on Saturday. Menon was addressing the annual Shangri La Dialogue organised by the
London-based International Institute of Strategic Studies and hosted by Singapore.
Among the leaders that Menon met on the margins of the conference are US Defence Secretary Robert Gates,Gen Mao Xiaotian ,the Deputy Chief of General Staff of the Chinese Peoples Liberation Army and Teo Chee Hean, the Defence Minister of Singapore.
Menons public remarks on Afghanistan remarks came amidst reports that the US was asking the leading Asian nations to support the rapid expansion of the military training programme that will allow Kabul to defend itself.
Asked at the conference about Delhis contribution to Afghan security after the likely withdrawal of American troops,Menon emphasised Indias strong interest in promoting peace and stability in Afghanistan.
However,he dismissed the possibility of India replacing the current international military presence. He pointed to the fact that Indias emphasis until now has been on the economic reconstruction of Afghanistan. On the security side,Menon said Indias policy will be guided by what Kabul seeks from Delhi and the limitation on
Speaking at the plenary session on security challenges in Asia,Menon said the risk of nuclear weapons falling into extremist or terrorist hands is real. Without naming Pakistan,Menon also referred to the clandestine proliferation networks in our neighbourhood that have affected Indian security.
A new non-proliferation paradigm is necessary to deal with issues of nuclear security caused by the rise of non-state actors and their links to formal or organised structures in weak states,Menon emphasised.
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