US supply of sophisticated weapons to Pakistan concerns India, says Antony

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Thiruvananthapuram, March 6 (ANI): Expressing serious concern over the US government supplying new weapons to Pakistan, Defence Minister A.K. Antony on Saturday said that the US needs to ensure that these weapons do not reach into hands of terrorists and be used against India.peaking during a news conference at Vizhinjam the Defense Minister said: "Latest decision of US to provide again sophisticated weapons to Pakistan is a matter of concerns to India. When the US Defence Secretary was here (in New Delhi) I actually had taken up the matter with him," said A K Antony on the sidelines of function of Indian Coast Guard at Vizhinjam.

There have been reports that the US has cleared the supply of sophisticated laser-guided bomb kits, 12 surveillance drones and 18 F-16 fighters to enhance Pakistan military's capability to strike at Taliban and al-Qaeda targets located in remote tribal areas of Pakistan-Afghanistan border.

Mr. Antony also said the United States must ensure that these arms being given to Pakistan are not used against India.

"We request US again they must see that these new equipments which they are going to give to Pakistan it should be properly utilised, it should be deployed only in AF-Pak (Afghanistan-Pakistan) border and it is duty of US to see that these equipments are not used against India," he added.

Since 2001, the US has given an aid of 12 billion dollars but it had held back supply of sophisticated weapons.

On Saturday, Antony inaugurated the administrative block of Indian Coast Guard station at Vizhinjam Port that is regarded as one of the major container ports in the country.

Inaugurating the new Coast Guard Administrative Complex at Vizhinjam, Mr. Antony lauding the efforts of the Coast Guard and said: "'Coastal Security' requires sustained and dedicated effort from all the stake holders. All acquisition projects in respect of the Indian Coast Guard were being processed on fast track basis by the Government, leaving no stone unturned in protecting our maritime interests, and the threat emanating from the seas. He indicated that all necessary funds have been sanctioned to the Coast Guard for new acquisitions."

The new office complex inaugurated by Antony, comprises of four buildings constructed by the Military Engineering Service, and accommodates both the Administrative Complex, as well as living accommodation for men.

The state-of-the-art Administrative complex encompasses an Operations Centre, Communication Station, Conference Hall, Parade Ground and outdoor sports facilities. (ANI)

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