India rules out lowering guard on western border
* Indian defence minister says Taliban a real threat to India
NEW DELHI: Indian Defence Minister AK Antony said on Thursday that given the situation in Pakistan, India could not afford to lower its guard along its western border, especially in Jammu and Kashmir.
According to a Hindustan Times report, Antony, talking to media after addressing the Unified Commanders’ Conference, expressed concern over the situation in Pakistan.
“Pakistan is in turmoil. We are very concerned about it. We are trying to convince Pakistan that they have to take strict action against anti-India elements operating from there,” he said.
He said the Taliban are not only a threat to world peace but also a direct threat to India.
When asked about his proposed meeting with US National Security Adviser James Jones on Friday, Antony said the security situation in the region, especially in Afghanistan, is likely to be a focus of the discussion.
Referring to Pakistan-India relations, Antony said relations could move forward only if strong action was taken by Islamabad against anti-India outfits operating from Pakistan.
When asked about progress on the issue of a unified command for the armed forces, Antony said that after initial resistance, the three services had realised the need to work together.
“There has been considerable progress in the last eight years. Initially, there was resistance from the three services, but now, they have realised the [need for a] unified command because just one service cannot, in modern times, protect the state on its own,” Antony added. daily times monitor/app