Former diplomat says India should not be complacent over US snub to Pak

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New Delhi, Mar. 25 (ANI): Former Indian Foreign Secretary Lalit Mansingh has said that while the US might have turned down Pakistan's quest for a civil nuclear deal akin to the India-US civil nuclear agreement, New Delhi should not be complacent over the snub and the eventual outcome of US-Pakistan strategic dialogue.

Mansingh, who also served as India's ambassador to the United States, believes that a US-Pakistan nuclear deal was never expected. India, he said, should keep focusing on the future of Afghanistan and its relationship with central Asia.

Mansingh also underlined the fact that since 2001, the US has given nearly 50 billion dollars in aid to Pakistan and is planning to dole out an additional 7.5 billion dollars over the next five years.

ISI chief Lt. General Ahmed Shuja Pasha and Pakistan Army Chief General Ashfaq Pervez Kayani are there with a big list of military equipment, he said

The supply of a fresh batch of nuclear-enabled F-16 and maritime aircraft supplied by the United States to Pakistan is not to fight terrorism, but to fight India, added Mansingh.

He said that the military relationship between the US and Pakistan is 50 years old, while the relationship with India just started a decade ago.

Islamabad will continue to have the same relations in the future.

Former Foreign Minister K. Natwar Singh said Pakistan had gone to the US with "exaggerated" hopes, and added that India and Pakistan are not in the same league.

"India is a global player, Pakistan is not, although they have close links with the Pentagon and the CIA," he added.

"The US lacks understanding of our region, and, the Prime Minister, who will be visiting the United States to attend Nuclear Security Summit, should apprise (President) Obama about ndia's concerns," he said. By Naveen Kapoor (ANI)

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