News / Asia

US Defense Chief Warns Al-Qaida Intends to Provoke India-Pakistan War

US Defense Secretary Robert Gates at a news conference in New Delhi, 20 Jan 2010
US Defense Secretary Robert Gates at a news conference in New Delhi, 20 Jan 2010

Multimedia

TEXT SIZE - +

America's defense secretary is warning that al-Qaida, and what he calls its "syndicate" in South Asia, could provoke a new war between nuclear-armed rivals India and Pakistan.

U.S. Defense Secretary Robert Gates, visiting India, is delivering a bleak assessment of the security situation in what he calls the "very dangerous region."  Speaking to reporters in the Indian capital, he warned a syndication of terrorist groups under the al-Qaida umbrella - benefiting from the successes of each other - intends to destabilize the region with further attacks in Afghanistan, Pakistan and India.

In his meetings with Indian government leaders, including Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, Gates praised New Delhi's statesmanship and restraint following the Mumbai attack, which is blamed on Pakistani-based insurgents.  But the defense chief is cautioning that such restraint cannot be expected again, if India suffers a similar assault. 

"I think it's not unreasonable to assume that Indian patience would be limited were there to be further attacks," he said.

The November 2008 attack on India's commercial capital, blamed on Lashkar-e-Taiba, killed more than 160 people.

Gates was asked by reporters whether the United States favors India sending troops to Afghanistan to assist the multi-national coalition battling insurgents there.

"Let's be honest with one another here.  There are real suspicions in both India and Pakistan about what the other is doing in Afghanistan," he said.

Gates is requesting both New Delhi and Islamabad to be "fully transparent" with each other about their activities in Afghanistan to allay suspicions, adding they should focus on development aid, humanitarian assistance and training in limited areas.

Gates, who was appointed by then President George W. Bush in late 2006, has not made a visit to India as part of the Obama Cabinet until now.  During the Bush era, defense cooperation between India and the United States warmed to an unprecedented degree, which the Pentagon is looking to further expand under the present administration.

Gates told reporters that, in his meetings with Prime Minister Singh, as well as India's external affairs and defense ministers, they discussed the military build-up by China, with which India shares a still-disputed border.

American and Indian defense officials say they agree that there should be greater engagement with Beijing, to prevent misunderstandings and potential miscalculations.
 

You May Like

Analysts Warn of Regional Proxy Conflict in Afghanistan

Analysts warn if Kabul’s neighbors do not start to cooperate, competing desires for influence could deteriorate into a bloody proxy war in the country More

Saudi Intelligence Chief Replaced

Bandar bin Sultan came under criticism for supporting al Qaida, prompting King Abdallah to wrest Syria operations away from him in February, handing them to Interior Minister Prince Mohammed bin Nayef More

Poetry Magazine editor Don Share talks what makes a good poem with VOA's David Byrd

What makes a good poem? And is poetry as viable an art form as it once was? To find out, VOA's David Byrd spoke to Don Share, the editor of Poetry Magazine. More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Google Buys Drone Companyi
|| 0:00:00
...
 
🔇
X
George Putic
April 15, 2014
In its latest purchase of high-tech companies, Google has acquired a manufacturer of solar-powered drones that can stay in the air almost indefinitely, relaying broadband Internet connection to remote areas. It is seen as yet another step in the U.S. based Web giant’s bid to bring Internet to the whole world. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Google Buys Drone Company

In its latest purchase of high-tech companies, Google has acquired a manufacturer of solar-powered drones that can stay in the air almost indefinitely, relaying broadband Internet connection to remote areas. It is seen as yet another step in the U.S. based Web giant’s bid to bring Internet to the whole world. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Ray Bonneville Sings the Blues and More on New CD

Singer/songwriter Ray Bonneville has released a new CD called “Easy Gone” with music that reflects his musical and personal journey from French-speaking Canada to his current home in Austin,Texas. The eclectic artist’s fan base extends from Texas to various parts of North America and Europe. VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from Austin.
Video

Video Millions Labor in Pakistan's Informal Economy

The World Bank says that in Pakistan, roughly 70 percent work in the so-called informal sector, a part of the economy that is unregulated and untaxed. VOA's Sharon Behn reports from Islamabad on how the informal sector impact's the Pakistani economy.
Video

Video Passover Celebrates Liberation from Bondage

Jewish people around the world are celebrating Passover, a commemoration of their liberation from slavery in Egypt more than 3,300 years ago. According to scripture, God helped the Jews, led by Moses, escape bondage in Egypt and cross the Red Sea into the desert. Zlatica Hoke reports that the story of the Jewish Exodus resonates with other people trying to escape slave-like conditions.
Video

Video Police Pursue Hate Crime Charges Against Kansas Shooting Suspect

Prosecutors are sifting through the evidence in the wake of Sunday’s shootings in a suburb of Kansas City, Missouri that left three people dead. A suspect in the shootings taken into custody is a white supremacist. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, he was well-known to law enforcement agencies and human rights groups alike.
Video

Video In Eastern Ukraine, Pro-unity Activists Emerge from Shadows

Amid the pro-Russian uprisings in eastern Ukraine, there is a large body of activists who support Ukrainian unity and reject Russian intervention. Their activities have remained largely underground, but they are preparing to take on their pro-Moscow opponents, as Henry Ridgwell reports from the eastern city of Donetsk.
Video

Video Basket Maker’s Skills Have World Reach

A prestigious craft show in the U.S. capital offers one-of-a-kind creations by more than 120 artists working in a variety of media. As VOA’s Julie Taboh reports from Washington, one artist lucky enough to be selected says sharing her skills with women overseas is just as significant.
Video

Video UN Report Urges Speedier Action to Avoid Climate Disaster

A new United Nations report says the world must switch from fossil fuels to cleaner energy sources to control the effects of climate change. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change released the report (Sunday) following a meeting of scientists and government representatives in Berlin. The comprehensive review follows two recent IPCC reports that detail the certainty of climate change, its impacts and in this most recent report what to do about it. VOA’s Rosanne Skirble has the details.
AppleAndroid