Top Aide to Prepare for Obama's India Visit, Discuss AfPak

Washington/New Delhi, July 10 (IANS) India and the US will exchange notes on developments in Afghanistan when US National Security Adviser James Jones comes here next week to lay the groundwork for President Barack Obama's visit in November.

During his July 14-16 visit to New Delhi, the general will meet with his counterpart Shivshankar Menon and other senior Indian officials, US National Security Council Spokesman Mike Hammer said in Washington Friday.

He would discuss "a full range of subjects key to the strategic partnership we are developing with India, including counter-terrorism cooperation, regional security, defence cooperation, and export controls", Hammer said.

"General Jones will also have an opportunity to begin laying the groundwork for a successful visit by President Obama to India in November," Hammer said.

The two sides are also expected to discuss the situation in Afghanistan in the aftermath of Gen. David Petraeus replacing Gen. Stanley McChrystal as the US commander of the allied forces in Afghanistan and reports of Pakistan pitching for including the Pakistan-backed Haqqani network in a power-sharing deal in that country, said reliable sources in New Delhi.

The situation in the AfPak region will figure in the discussions.

India is likely to reiterate its apprehensions about accommodating hardcore Taliban extremists who have an overt anti-India agenda, said the sources.

Jones' visit will also coincide with the talks between the foreign ministers of India and Pakistan in Islamabad July 15 aimed at restarting the dialogue process between the two neighbours.

Although regional issues will figure in the discussions, Jones' visit is primarily aimed at firming up the agenda for Obama's history-making visit to India in November.

Calling US-India relations as "one of the defining partnerships of the 21st century", Obama has said during his India visit he plans to together make "history and progress that will be treasured by generations to come".

"Our relations with India are at the highest of priorities for my administration and for me personally as president of the United States," Obama declared at a reception for External Affairs Minister S. M. Krishna after the inaugural US-India Strategic Dialogue last month.

In preparation for the Obama visit to India, apart from the strategic dialogue led by Krishna, Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee and Commerce Minister Anand Sharma among others have travelled to the US.


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Comment on this article

  • A.S.Mathew, U.S.A.

    Sat, Jul 10 2010

    The U.S. has helped India through
    many programmes like Public Law
    480, foreign aid, also during the
    emergency crisis in 1962 when
    China attacked India without any
    warning and provocation.

    In those days, the U.S. had a very
    close political and military
    relationship with our next door
    Pakistan, but now America might be
    regreting her time and money
    wasted in Pakistan. India has to
    be partially blamed for her cold
    relationship with Washington. India
    down from the Nehru era up until
    his grandson's era, took a very
    strong pro-Russian agenda to provoke Washington in every turn.
    To make the matters worse,
    Pandit Nehru got his close friend
    Sri. V. K. Krishna Menon as the
    foreign minister, and with his
    blistering and venomous oratory
    in the U.N. against the western
    countries, made the close relationship
    with India far impractical.

    Once the U.S. stretched her hands
    of help to India, now the turn has
    come, that India may be the most
    helpful hand for the old helper.
    History is like the pendulum of
    a clock and it will swing from one
    side to another side in due time.

    DisAgree Agree Reply Report Abuse

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Title: Top Aide to Prepare for Obama's India Visit, Discuss AfPak

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