US Vows to Help Bring Mumbai Attackers to Justice

By Arun Kumar

Washington, June 4 (IANS) The US has reiterated its commitment to provide full cooperation and support in counter-terrorism investigations, including exchanging information and bringing the perpetrators of the 2008 Mumbai terror attack to justice.

The reiteration was made in a joint statement issued after the first ever India-US strategic dialogue between high level delegations led by External Affairs Minister S.M. Krishna and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.

Expressing "grave concern over recent incidents in the United States and India that remind that terrorism and violent extremism know no boundaries and remain continuing threats to global, regional and domestic security", they acknowledged the importance of continued cooperation in efforts to defeat terrorism.

On advancing global security, Krishna and Clinton "reiterated their shared goal of advancing security and stability across Asia, in particular, through the emergence of an open, balanced and inclusive architecture of cooperation in the region".

Clinton, the statement said, welcomed "India's leadership role in helping to shape the rise of a stable, peaceful and prosperous Asia".

On disarmament and non-proliferation, Krishna and Clinton "reiterated the two countries' shared vision of a world free of nuclear weapons" and restated their commitment to address the challenges of global nuclear proliferation.

"They also committed to continue working together to achieve an early start of negotiations on a multilateral, non-discriminatory and internationally and effectively verifiable Fissile Material Cut-off Treaty at the Conference on Disarmament," the statement said.

The joint statement, on energy security, clean energy and climate change, noted the US and India have taken crucial steps towards full implementation of civil nuclear cooperation and reiterated that nuclear energy can make a significant contribution to building a sustainable and clean energy future.

In the field of agriculture, Krishna and Clinton resolved to continue to look for innovative ways to work together to promote agricultural development and reduce rural poverty, promote global food security, and improve weather prediction and crop forecasting capabilities.

They also pledged to work together to improve the farm to market supply chain, food processing and agricultural extension programmes.

The two leaders noted that in the field of education there was "enormous potential for enhancing academic exchanges and collaboration, including through participation of US universities in India, in the context of the ongoing reforms and expansion of the higher education and professional training sectors in India".

They welcomed the steps taken towards implementation of the Obama-Singh 21st Century Knowledge Initiative launched last year with the goal of increasing university linkages and junior faculty development exchanges between US and Indian universities.

Both governments pledged to enhance bilateral collaboration in controlling and preventing diseases, assuring food and medical product safety, and increasing biomedical and translational research and development with the goal of identifying new and effective methods of medical treatment.

In the science and technology realm, the statement "emphasised the importance of science and technology collaboration, both in economic and strategic areas and both governments reinforced the need to support science and technology research aimed at innovation".

On development, they "pledged to continue bilateral discussions on their identified ongoing initiatives on global issues of common concern through the Global Issues Forum, which is focused on how the world's two largest democracies can form a truly global partnership by working through regional, international and multilateral cooperation."



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